Cover photo for Bessie Elmae Price's Obituary
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Bessie Elmae Price

May 28, 1940 — February 23, 2023

Bessie Elmae Price

Mother Bessie Elmae Warren-Price was born May 28, 1940, to Julius C. Warren and Mary G. Carter-Warren. Mother Price was born in Lexington, Missouri and later moved to Des Moines Iowa with her parents and two siblings, Merma and Roland when her father Julius was looking for better employment opportunities to support his family. After that move the Warren’s made Des Moines their place of residence they stay rooted and called Iowa their home.

Pastor Price and Mother Price would have been married for 64 years on May 9, 2023.They were married at the young ages; Mother was 18 and Pastor Price was 21. Out of this union they raised five children, George T. Price Jr., Gregory Stephen Price (Rosella), Shari Lynn Price, Shellie R. Price-Wardlaw (Cornell Wardlaw), and Michelle Leigh Price. When her older sister Merma Neighbors passed away in 1978, she a took the charge to raise her niece, Regina Marie Johnson-Rand. Mother and Pastor Price also assisted their daughter Shellie in raising their first grandchild Roman and he can be considered another child of theirs as he is in his thirties and has been a constant help to his grandparents from childhood into his adult years.

Mother Price graduated from Des Moines Technical High School. Following high school Mother went on to work for the Des Moines Public School Administration. After a while Mother decided to pursue a career in the medical profession and she trained to become and Obstetric Technician. For those of you who do not know what that is, in layman’s terms, she assisted doctors in delivering children into the world. Mother Price went on to become what she prided herself in being, the only African American OB Technician at Iowa Lutheran Hospital on all three shifts for 27 years. When her daughters were preparing to deliver her grandchildren at Iowa Lutheran, she sternly made it a point to remind us of this statistic, telling us that we better not come in the delivery room without bathing, having clean feet, and better not be yelling or screaming! Mother Price was not one who ever wanted to be embarrassed or looked down upon because it was not easy in for African Americans in the medical profession she was in, and trust us, we obliged her requests, or should we say her demands!

Oh, how our Mother was loved and cherished by our father. Dad always treated her as her price was far above rubies, and a perfect cut, carat, color, and clarity of a diamond which is so very rare. He would move the ends of the earth and mountains just to see her smile! Anything Mother wanted, and we do mean anything, Dad went out of his way to provide her. When Dad would try to whisper sweet nothings to her, she would say, "George, honey, now you stop that, the kids are here!" He would say, “OOPS, I didn’t notice” (sarcastically), and give her the loving look that every woman wants from their husband, with the adoring twinkle in his eyes and laugh until he had tears in his eyes.

Mother Bessie Price loved going to church, but she loved God and being a service to Him even more. Mother would always say, “there is something about the peace you feel when you are in the house of God that is unexplainable.” Mother’s famous saying was, “There is nothing better than peace.” When our father was pastoring at Grace Temple Church of God in Christ, they spent much of their time just sitting in the presence of the Lord and listening to gospel music in the sanctuary. Mother would have her own praise and worship with God during those times. God blessed her with the spirit of discernment, and because of this, her children could get away with NOTHING!

With serving the Lord being her favorite hobby, there was another hobby that came in a close, tight, second which was SHOPPING! Mother Price loved to shop, and she loved to dress as if she was going to the Academy Awards. One of the family friends, God rest her soul, Mother Clementine Bell use to always say, "Here comes Marilyn Monroe!" Her and her mother, Mother Mary Warren, loved to shop at Younkers, it was their favorite place to escape, and it was both of their favorite hobby and past time. They would be there all day and then rush home to hide their purchases from their husbands. When they wore their new items, their husbands would ask, “When did you get that new dress?”, they both would answer, “What? This old thing?” Mother Price taught her kids to buy off season to get sales, (which she learned from her mother) and to never pay full price for anything. Mother had the keen eye for a sale. If she saw something she liked and wanted, and it was original price she would leave it on the right on the rack,( because she knew the markdown days). She would come back week after week until the price was low enough that she would not have a guilty conscience. After weeks of price watching, she would then make the purchase saying, “It is now the right price!” as if she was on the Price Is Right! (No pun intended.)

The third thing that brought Mother Price joy were her grandchildren. She loved each one of you with every fiber of her being. Her grandchildren could do no wrong, even if they were doing wrong right in front of her face, they were always angels from God in her eyes. Roman would get all the Pay Per Views for wrestling (even though Dad would say, “Not this time buddy,” (which mom quickly overruled). She would be laying on one side of the bed, just adoringly watching him jump up and down the other side of the bed trying to perfect wrestling moves next to her. Marquie was the first granddaughter and Mom would fly to Illinois just to watch her when her parents had a full work schedule at United Airlines just so they would not have to worry about leaving her with someone that they did not know. Kiana, was the quiet one that Mom always said was the easiest of the grandchildren to watch. She would protect her from Roman when he put her in handcuffs and locked her arms to the bathroom door. Baby Jade, the youngest of the grandchildren and the third granddaughter is always going to be her baby even though she is a grown woman now. Jade will always remember being referred to as Baby Jade by her Grandma Bessie. We honestly believe the connection is because Jade resembles her so much when she was a young woman herself. Mother Price was a loving wife, mother, sister, aunt, cousin and friend. She was somewhat an old soul because most of the people she would call friend were usually 20 years plus her senior. She would always teach her children that no matter what we do, to always have respect for our elders. It was because she knew they were knowledgeable and had much wisdom.

Mother Price served as the Head of Hospitality for the Iowa Jurisdiction Church of God in Christ, in the Women's Department under the leadership of Supervisor Mother Jean Kaiser for 20 years. She took pride in showering the guests that came to the state for various conventions and meetings by putting together the most beautiful fruit baskets to welcome them to Iowa, all while giving precise instruction to Pastor Price on where to deliver them, and who they were to be given to.

Mother Bessie Price went from labor to reward on February 23, 2023. She was preceded in death by her grandparents Bishop Elmer (which her middle name comes from) and Mother Carter; her parents Deacon Julius C. and Mother Mary G. Warren; her older sister Merma J. Neighbors; her baby brother and sister-in law, Pastor Roland H. and Mother Laura A. Warren; Her oldest daughter, Shari L. Price; her oldest son, George T. Price Jr.

Left to cherish Mother Bessie Price’s memory is her loving and adoring husband Pastor George T. Price Sr., her three children, Pastor Gregory Stephen Price (Rosella) of Aurora, IL; Shellie Renee' Price-Wardlaw (Cornell) of Des Moines, IA; and Michelle Leigh Price of Des Moines, IA. Her Grandchildren, her only grandson Roman An’trez Price (Britney); Dr. Marquie Renee Price-Curry (Joshua); Kiana Raishawn Dae; and Jade Marie Price. Her four great-grandchildren, Rylee Price, Anthony Price, Cameron Price, and her only great granddaughter, Londyn Price. Her Nieces, Anita K. Warren, Diane C. Warren of Des Moines, IA., and Regina M. Johnson-Rand Lubbock, TX; her nephews Kevin Rife, of Des Moines, IA; Terry Kemp, of San Antonio, TX; and Roland H. (Ron) Warren Jr., of Tacoma, WA., along with a host of extended family and friends of whom she loved and cared for very much.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Bessie Elmae Price, please visit our flower store.

Past Services


Thursday, March 2, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm

Henderson's Highland Park Funeral Home

3500 6th Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50313

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Funeral Service

Friday, March 3, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am

Revival Center Church of God in Christ

3816 36th Street, Des Moines, IA 50310

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