Isabelle Cecilia Dawson

2 Isabelle Dawson

It is with sadness, yet gratitude, that on July 17th, 2023, at 5:35AM, our beloved Isabelle slipped quietly into an eternal sleep. Her job was done, and the Lord called her home.

She was born Isabelle Cecilia Gilliam at her home in Jeddah, Ohio, on December 2nd, 1942. She was born to Mattie Elizabeth, and the late Henry Gilliam and lovingly raised by the late Isaiah Culbreath and guided by the late Primes Burns. She was the eldest of her siblings, Isaiah Culbreath, Stanlee Culbreath, Wilastine Gilliam, late Everett Culbreath, Jeffrey Gilliam, Todd Gilliam, late April Gilliam, Shelia Gilliam and stepsisters Darla Burns and Rhonda Parrish.

Isabelle graduated from the infamous Steubenville Big Red High School in 1960 and was a trendsetter, embraced by everyone she connected with. Before leaving Steubenville and starting her college career, she made it a point to leave her mark. While employed by the grocery, she became the first Black woman to hold a position as cashier at the Kroger grocery store.

After leaving Steubenville, she attended Columbus State University, formerly known as CTI, where she received her Associate Degree of Arts and Sciences. Furthering her education, she attended The Ohio State University, where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Arts and Sciences, with an emphasis in Black studies. She was also recognized as a cultural leader/influencer within the community.

In 1965, she married Albert Dawson, and welcomed her first child, Abert Lamont Dawson Jr., and she later united with her life partner, Marshall Evans, and welcomed the birth of their daughter Malika Keianna Dawson (Horston) in September 1972.

Isabelle, a beautiful spirit, who attracted all walks of life, had never met a stranger and understood what it means to love unconditionally. She meant everything to everybody and made a conscious effort to spread love to everyone who needed it. She attended New Faith Baptist Chruch.

In Columbus, Isabelle held various positions. She worked as a teacher, where she enjoyed mentoring the youth. In 1984, she began working closely with her brother, attorney Stanlee Culbreath, as an administrative assistant extraordinaire. She was the face of the law office and retired in 2014.

Isabelle Cecilia Dawson regained her legs and wings in the early morning of July 17th. She spent her final days enjoying comforting words from a host of family members and friends sending her off.

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Condolence Messages

  1. Jessica Guinn

    Thoughts and prayers for entire family. While we know Isabella will be missed on earth, she will be celebrating in heaven.

    Jessica and David Guinn

  2. To the family. Heart felt condolences. You are in our prayers. She was a beautiful person who always had kind words

  3. Jencie Smith-Jackson

    I will always love and remember your mom and dad! They were special to my mom which made them extra special to me! Such beautiful souls and your mom always made me smile and gave me a big hug! May the Lord continue to comfort you and your family! Love Always!

  4. Clarissa L. Speaker

    Sending love and prayers to the family and friends.
    May the God of comfort be with you is my prayer.

  5. Sending prayers and condolences to the family. Isabelle was such a loving and kind person. She will be greatly missed.

  6. Sister Pearline Byrd

    May my condolence bring you comfort and may my prayers ease the pain of your loss. May God be with you.

  7. I am so sorry to hear about Isabelle. She was a free spirit who was not afraid to speak her mind. She also was a terrific office administrator and really kept everyone in line. The place was never the same when you retired.

  8. Bernadette L. Rutherford

    I’m so very thankful for this video. Watching on full screen, it was almost if I was right there with you ! Praying Father GOD’S peace and comfort for us all, in those difficult days to come.

  9. Alondra Thompson

    I will miss visiting you, and enjoying a nice conversation. And working in the arts. Writing poetry an song. Love always my friend from OSU. In a better place

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