A glimpse into her life- in the beginning: Octavia Elizabeth Smtih Daniels Wren was born and reared in Pheba, Mississippi. The youngest daughter of the late Benjamin Smith and Sara Townsend Smith, she arrived on Wednesday, January 1, 1930. She was 13 of 14 children and she loved being one of the youngest as it gave her the life experience that she would use to “manage up” and it taught her how “to enter” a room. Her early life was spent on the family farm that her father purchased and where he and her mother provided a good, simple life and the moral compass that would guide her for the rest of her life. So much of what happened in her early life occurred in her local community in Clay County, Mississippi. It’s where she was educated, where she was baptised and joined the Lower Prairie Creek Missionary Baptist Church. It’s where she excelled in many things, including as a scholar athlete. Ultimately, she earned a certificate in education from Mary Holmes College. She was an early education teacher and taugh at Greenfield Community School, her nephew Bill Chandler was one of her students. No matter what life gave her, she continued to teach whether in a one room school, kitchen table, a cotten field, a living roon or her favorite place, her front porch. She never stopped teaching; she never never stopped taking note of what was happening around her; and definitely, she never stopped offering her observations. Octavia moved from Clay County to Tate County , Mississippi in the mid-1950s. While all of her sisters moved up North and to the Mid-West, she stayed deeply planted in Mississippi. Consequently, some of her life, growing up in the Jim Crow, segregated South, was not easy, she spent many years on a share-cropper’s farm. During those years, she remembered who she was, where she came from, and did not let an oppressive, racist system break her. In fact, it was during those years that she began her career as a political activist, holding meetings in her home, helping people to read and write so they could register to vote. Ironically, in the very system that tried to deny her the right to vote, she became trained and certified as a Municipal Elections Commissioner for Senatobie by many Secretraries of State, and you could find her at the polls until her health began to decline. Few in Tate County would run for political office without seeking her counsel and support. On becoming Momma T: When she became a grandmother in the 1970s, she declared that she was too young to have kids call her grandma and instead she wanted them to call her Octavia. As you know, most kids’ early sounds begin with M, D and T and it became clear that Chris, Shon, Keith and Terence were not going to master the name Octavia. Never one to give up, she decided that they would call her Momma T instead. So, she would practice with them, as any teacher would, and they eventually got it! And each time a child was born, Patrick, Tarsha, Anna, Trice, Eric, Jeffery, Derrick, Corey, Royrick, Brandon, and Ashley, the name stuck and so today more grandchildren, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren than we can count call her Momma T. It would be enough if the name were reserved for family members; however, along the way, over the years, her grandchildren and children would introduce her to their friends as Momma T and if she met you and liked you, she would say “My name is Octavia, but you can call me Momma T.” So today, it is a name of endearment and hundreds of people across the United States and around the world know her, even if they have not met her. She is a legend, and her name is synonymous with Love. Her Family: Octavia was blessed to have had two husbands, Johnnie C. Daniels and Arthur Wren, both proceeded her in death. She was even more blessed to have birthed four children: Mary Jane Thurman Higgenbottom, Joyce Ann Daniels Bolton Wren, Sharon Daniels Luvene-Reilly, and Roy Wallace Daniels. She was proud to have gained other children through marriages: Emma Simmons, Betty Washington, Jean Ruby Smith, Chubby Dwayne Daniels and James Clyde Daniels, and just as importantly she became a bonus mom to so, so many more. She had an incredibly special connection with Lettie Mae Jordan who cared for and loved her for more than 20 years. All of her siblings: Benjamin Smith, Catherine Banyon, Essie Mae Petty, Flemon Smith, Georgia Mae Gladney, Irene Bramham, Jimmy Lee Smith, Lee Alma Chandler, Leroy Smith, Sally Smith, Sara Lou Jones, Willie Smith, except one, Lorene Myles, proceeded her in death. Additionally, a daughter Joyce Ann Bolton and a grandson Eric Simmons left all too soon. The Church: Always, the church played an important role in her life from her early days at Lower Prairie Creek to Bowmantown Missionary Baptist to her most loving and supportive church home and family, Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church, where she served on the Usher Board and was a proud member of the Mother Board. Final Internment: Queen Mother Octavia, Momma T, took her final breath on Thursday, December 30, 2021 at approximately 4:48 a.m. The burial grounds at Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church date back to the 1800s so it is appropriate that Queen Mother Octavia Elizabeth Smith Daniels Wren would be buried among some of the church’s oldest members, home to the elders and the ancestors who came to this country from Africa. May she forever rest in peace, and may we be at peace as we continue to celebrate her life. Mojuba to our God, Mojuba to our land, Mojuba to our ancestors.