Laura Mae Lipscomb (Graham) was born on February 28, 1945, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to the late Clyde and Nettie Graham Surratt.
Laura graduated from West Mifflin North High School, West Mifflin, PA, in 1963. After graduating, she worked at Pittsburgh Hospital and Magee Women’s Hospital. She married Richard Murphy. Unexpected tragedy struck Laura’s life forcing her to tackle being a young mother and widow.
Laura’s life didn’t end there though, and once again, love found her, and she embraced the hope it brought. With fresh resolve and much love, Laura married Vernon Lipscomb. The family relocated to Harrisburg due to Vernon's job transfer. Upon settling in Harrisburg, Laura became employed in the Harrisburg school district as an Administrative Officer. She was known and loved for caring for the children she served. Often she discussed with great frustration why should a child go hungry. She understood the protocols in place, but her heart overrode them and made sure every child that she was aware of received the nutrition they desperately needed, to the point of paying for students’ lunches out of her pocket.
On Father’s Day, June 21, 1987, the unthinkable occurred, and once again she became a widow. Broken but not destroyed, she continued to press on in life raising her children alone. While life took her down many difficult roads, Laura never allowed herself to lose sight of what was most important: family.
As she nurtured her four children, Laura thought nothing of supporting her extended family when hard times hit. No matter the day, time, or distance, she’d drop what she was doing, gather her nieces and nephews and care for them throughout the years.
Caring for family extended to her children’s friends as well. If her children were inside doing chores and their friends came over to play, she would put them to work as well. She didn’t cut corners, and if the kids got out of line, they were quickly put back in place!
Laura didn’t hold her tongue, which sometimes, got her in trouble. But you knew where she stood, and if you asked her a question, you could rest assured, she’d give you an answer. You may not have liked the answer, but she left no doubt about her stance. There wasn’t a question her children asked that they didn’t receive a response.
She never gave up on love. And in her later years, she found love yet again and married James “Buddy” Carter. After three years, she was for the third time widowed. But with the loss, she somehow managed to leave you smiling. In her later years, her health began to fail, and despite the challenges it brought, she still displayed a sense of humor that filled a room with laughter.
Even at her sister Beverly’s funeral, through tears she recalled comical moments as only she could tell a story that left you crying and smiling. As challenging as her life was, she was blessed with the ability to press on with hopes of a better day.
She leaves to cherish her memory: sons Jeffrey, Richard, Steven, and daughter Nicole (Samuel); six grandchildren: Timothy, Monet, Ja’Lissa, Alexander, Salerio and Landon, and two great-grandchildren: Nicholas and Princeton and a host of relatives. She was preceded in death by her husband, Vernon Lipscomb and her sisters, Cassandra Harriet Graham and Beverly Elizabeth Clark (Graham).
The Family of Laura Mae Lipscomb acknowledges with grateful appreciation, the prayers, flowers, cards and other acts of kindness received during this time.
May God bless you all.
Her wings were ready,
Our hearts were not.