Amazing Photography Book on Black Seniors "A Generation Found: Precious Pearls of Wisdom" by Roohee Marshall
By: Fern Gillespie
In "A Generation Found: Precious Pearls of Wisdom," 40 African American elders from rural towns to urban cities welcome Marshall into their homes. These vibrant Black seniors from ages 80 to 108 fondly share their life lessons, legacies and memories of family, community and culture.
"I was born in Natchez, Mississippi. I think everything that I have gained throughout my life up to now was due to the elders in my village--my grandparents, my aunts and uncles and the community," said Marshall. "Then I began missing the advice and wisdom that I had been receiving all those years. I looked around and saw that the elders were no longer with us."
In "A Generation Found: Precious Pearls of Wisdom," she discovered sung and unsung heroes. It features intimate photographs and interviews with African American seniors ranging from scholars to entrepreneurs to social workers to nurses to actors to activists. Some of the seniors include physician Dr. Melissa Freeman, 92, who is still in practice. Clara Villarosa, 87, renowned for establishing major Black-owned bookstores. Actress and composer Emmelyne "Emme" Kemp, 84, is a Broadway composer and actor for "Bubbling Brown Sugar. Acclaimed actress Vinie Burrows,94, is a social justice advocate and a Broadway star. Woodie King, Jr., 81, founder-director of famed New Federal Theatre. Educator Timuel Black, 100, is a community and political activist. Journalist and author A. Peter Bailey, 81, who was an aide to Malcolm X. Naomi Long Maggett, 95, English professor, friend of Langston Hughes and Poet Laureate of Detroit. Nobie Mae Hill, 106, is a beauty shop owner. Emeritus professor Dr. Acklyn Lynch, 88, continues to be an activist and expert on international economics. There's Marshall's father Rev. Elijah Lewis, 84 and her uncle, award-winning photographer Roy Lewis, 80.
"Each senior that I interviewed had the same thing in common," she said. "They had this enormous sense of commitment, devotion and love for the world and the community."
Marshall, who was born in the 1950s, has retired from a 30-year healthcare career in Michigan's hospitals. She continues to be an independent holistic practitioner promoting healthy alternatives and embracing a peaceful balanced state of mind. Marshall and her husband raised their family of five adult children in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Her daughter actress-model Maryam Basir has appeared in "Chi," BET "Holiday Heartbreak,"
Through "A Generation Found: Precious Pearls of Wisdom," Marshall creates a photo book of memories from African American elders who had lived through the historic changes and challenges of the 20th century. It's a book that can be shared by multi-generations from Gen Z to centenarians.
"A Generation Found: Precious Pearls of Wisdom" is available at www.RooheeMarshall.com, or email rooheesbooks@