Murray J. Nelson “Johnnie-Lee”, the son of Eliza and John Lawyer (stepfather) was born in Summerton, South Carolina on September 10, 1957. He was raised in a loving Christian home of his grandparents, Murray “Papa” and Mary Ann Nelson, both of whom preceded him in death.
Johnnie-Lee attended school in Clarendon County and graduated from Scott’s Branch High School in Summerton, South Carolina in 1975 with honors.
In 1976, Johnnie-Lee relocated to New York and was employed at Caprice Handbag Inc. and Supro Supply Company. He was also affectionately known as “Red and Bo Bo”.
Johnnie-Lee was a lovable person with an outstanding character. He was supportive, friendly and caring. He would always greet everyone with a smile. He was very outspoken and loved to tell jokes. His hobbies included playing cards, shooting pool and bowling. Johnnie-Lee will be greatly missed by his family and many friends.
Johnnie-Lee departed this life on Saturday, July 21, 2018 at Calvary Hospital in Bronx, New York.
He leaves to cherish his memory: a loving mother, Eliza Lawyer and stepfather, John Lawyer; a daughter, Tanya Martin; eight grandsons, a granddaughter and two great-granddaughters, all of Bronx, New York; three sisters: Linda Lawyer of Bronx, New York, Karen Lawyer and Betty Bracey of New York, New York; an adopted sister, Patricia Ann “Cookie” Nelson of Bronx, New York; aunts: Albertha Ragin, Alice Gibson, Laurena Thompson and Ester Madison all of Summerton, South Carolina and Josephine Holliday of Sumter, South Carolina; uncles: Elijah (Eleanor) Nelson of Bronx, New York and Johnnie McKnight of Pinewood, South
Carolina; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, friends and a best friend, James Bradford of New York, New York.
If Johnnie-Lee was here with us, he would be singing the chorus of Julie Covington’s “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina”:
Don’t cry for me, Argentina
The truth is I never left you
All through my wild days, my mad existence
I kept my promise
Don’t keep your distance.