“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever Believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
Our beloved Otheler “Babe” Speakman entered eternal rest on Wednesday, September 8, 2021. He has le a void in the lives of all who knew and loved him. Otheler was born on April 10, 1937, in Sterling, Georgia, to the late William and Maggie Speakman. To their union, he was the seventh of eleven children.
At an early age, Otheler accepted Christ at Salem Baptist Church. He faithfully served there as a Deacon for many years. An enjoyable ministry for him was to share his trade as a barber with everyone throughout the Sterling Community and at various nursing homes in our city. Otheler continued this work until his later years when his health began to fail. He later moved his membership to be with family at Grace United Methodist Church. Otheler received his formal education in the Glynn County School System and was a proud graduate of Risley High School
class of 1958. While at Risley, he played football throughout his high school years. He then matriculated at Fort Valley College (University) where he received a scholarship to continue playing the game that he loved.
Prior to graduating from Fort Valley, he entered the United States Army and dutifully served his country. His entire tour of duty wasat Fort Myer in Arlington, Virginia, where he was assigned to the Honor Guard Ceremonial Unit. A proud moment for Corporal Speakman was to be selected to stand guard at the United States Capital Building, while President John F. Kennedy Laid in State. After being honorably discharged in 1964, Otheler returned to Fort Valley College and graduated in 1965, with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Education. at same year, he began his career in education at Sarah Molette Junior High School. That is where, he became Coach Speakman. roughout his career, he also taught and coached athletics at Risley High School and Glynn County Middle School. During the same time, Coach also worked for Brunswick Recreation Department. He enjoyed his profession as he worked with young people and assisted them in their formative years. While working both jobs, Coach continued his education and earned his Master’s of Education degree in 1973 from Florida A&M University. Otheler was united in holy matrimony with Naomi Collier and in so doing, blended a family of three children. During his lifetime, Otheler made an impact on the lives of many. Some organizations with which he unselfishly served to support others include: Phi Beta Kappa, Fort Valley Alumni Association,Risley Alumni Association, Lambda Tau Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, and the Men of Grace.
Preceding him in death, along with his parents, were: two brothers, William (Betty) Speakman, Elsworth Speakman, Bishop Alexander Speakman, Milton Speakman, and Robert Speakman;
two sisters, Mary (Charles) Wynn and Martha (Herman) Rice; and one brother-in-law, Roy Torrence.His legacy is celebrated by: his loving and devoted wife, Naomi Collier Speakman; three children, Kyle C. Speakman, Lila (Bobby) Morrison, both of Charlotte, NC, and CDR Travis Collier of Paloma, CA; three grandchildren, Kyle Speakman, Jr., of Charlotte, NC, Kyra McLaren of Dallas, TX, and Caleb Nixon of Charlotte, NC; one sister, Naomi Torrence of Charlotte, NC; two brothers, John (Lorraine) Speakman of Stone Mountain, GA, and Cornelius (Cora) Speakman of Charlotte, NC; four sisters-in-law, Claudette Speakman of West Palm Beach, FL, Velma Speakman of Decatur, GA, Mary Speakman of Newark, and Ella Speakman, NJ; in addition to a host of special nieces and nephews, along with other relatives and friends.
Due to the current state of (COVID-19) pandemic and in order to promote social distancing, anyone entering the funeral home for viewing; as well as attending all graveside services must wear a mask. We will also limit the number of persons allowed to enter the funeral home at any given period during the viewing process. We ask that you leave the premise upon exiting the building. The family is most appreciative to each of you for your prayers and considerations during this difficult time in their lives.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Coach Otheler Speakman, please visit our floral store.