Clarence William Powell

Clarence William Powell, affectionately known as “Sunny,” entered eternal life on Saturday, March 23, 2019. He taught us many valuable lessons during his 69 years. Among those lessons are the following:”

  • Chart your own destiny, nothing is written in stone, and don’t listen to the naysayers. Follow your own heart and passion in life. Never give up your dreams!

  • Spread kindness and love to those around you, even the ones that can be difficult to love because you never know what they have been through.

  • Live by the golden rule and don’t judge others, as your life will go down unexpected roads; give people the benefit of the doubt.

  • Life is much more enjoyable if you have a good sense of humor. Life can slap you down, but humor can pick you back up.

  • There’s more than one route to your final destination. Think outside of the box and open up your mind to new possibilities and perspectives.     

  • “Stay strong,” was one of his constant admonitions!                                       

We are so blessed to have known and experienced what was and always will be Sunny. One characteristic that set Sunny apart from the crowd was his infectious smile. Hence; the nickname “Sunny.” His smile spanned ear to ear. It brightened up the dreariest of days.

Sunny’s spirit is carried on by his wife Elizabeth Powell (Beth), his son,  Brian Radford Powell, his daughter-in-law, Anna Patsel-Powell, and his beloved grandchildren,  Paxton Kian Powell, age 7 and Adalyn Paige Powell, age 3. Also remaining are his sisters; Brenda Sue Powell, Linda Louise Winstead (William), and Phyllis Simmons Bogey-Johnson. An extended family of relations and friends from every walk of life will celebrate the liberation of his spirit. Sunny has once again reunited with his late mother,  Mary Louise Powell, his father, George Powell, his oldest sister Shirley Ann Bogey Carnes-Villery, and his youngest sister, Rebecca Louise Linwood.

Sunny was born March 3, 1950 in San Bernardino, CA to Mary Louise Simmons-Powell and George Powell. He grew up in Fontana, CA, Cincinnati, OH, and Chicago, IL. Clarence attended Harlan High School on the South Side of Chicago. He obtained a pilot’s license at the age of 17, and flew shuttle and cargo routes in and out of O’Hare Airport. Without formal education beyond high school, he maintained a love of learning and was an avid seeker of knowledge. His intellectual capacity was incomprehensible to most. After several attempts to settle in cities he’d previously called home, he came to the nation’s capital where he settled and remained for the balance of his adult life.      

In 1975 at a New Year’s party in Dupont Circle on P Street in Washington, DC, Sunny met Beth and they became good friends. The friendship blossomed into love over the next two years. In 1977 they married and the depth of their love made them inseparable for the next 42 years. Born to their 1977 union was one son, the incredible Brian Radford Powell, who entered their lives in October 1978. In 2011, he was blessed with his grandson Paxton, and in 2015 with his granddaughter Adalyn. He played a significant role in the nurture and care of both of his grandchildren. They were his pride and joy, the apples of his eye, and his reason for getting up in the morning.

Without a doubt, Sunny had a life full of love, joy, friendships, and family.

Sunny was an entrepreneur most of his life, and his interests spanned many different creative outlets. He and Beth shared a passion for social activism initiatives in Arlington County, VA where they spent most of their life together. They both held a strong  belief in social justice for those without a voice and the most vulnerable or compromised populations in their community. They were major advocates for peace.

Friends and family will be celebrating and remembering Sunny’s life at Mount Comfort Cemetery on April 1, 2019 from 11:00 am – 11:30 am with a reception following the service at Brian Powell’s residence. Sunny will be profoundly missed and always deeply loved.

7 Responses to Clarence William Powell

  1. Joanne Eaglet says:

    We will miss Sunny and will always remember his kind smile. Our thoughts are with you all.

  2. Dany Ardon says:

    I will always carry with me the long talks Sunny and I had ever since I was a child. He was like a father to me and always gave me invaluable advice. Even when he wasn’t feeling one hundred percent he was selfless and tried to lift my spirits. We saw eye to eye on many subjects of life. He definitely followed through on never being judgmental. His light will forever shine bright in my heart.

  3. Ali Azizkeya says:

    You will be missed Sunny, the world has lost a very special soul who will never be forgotten. You will always be in our thoughts. Until we meet again… I will smile in honor of the life you have lived. Peace be upon you Sunny. Peace be upon all those who love you.

  4. Porter Jefferson says:

    Farewell, my friend, my bond.

    Beth & Brian, I feel your loss deeply; you have my condolences.

  5. Mariam Azizkeya says:

    Sunny you were a wonderful man. It was such a privilege and a joy to have you as a neighbor in Woodbury Park. You were always happy with a huge smile on your face.

    May you Rest In Peace and may your family find peace during this difficult time. May every day get easier for them and may they always remember your wonderful spirit.

    God Bless.

  6. Dan Janzen says:

    I remember meeting him for the first time at PDQ Pizza, where he was always a funny, happy guy. That was my first and everlasting impression of him. He welcomed me into his family and was always there to help and be a sunny presence. I know his immediate and extended family will always remember him as a wonderful, optimistic, larger-than-life spirit. I know his legacy of positivity will live on in the family and friends he created throughout his life. God bless.

  7. Brenda Sue Powell says:

    Brother, your life and legacy live on in my spirit for eternity. Thank you for sacrificing so much for Rebecca and me. We survived because you were there for us; our selfless guardian angel.
    Throughout my life I loved you dearly never recalling a time when you were less than dear and beloved or when I didn’t long for your presence. Consistency, loyalty, unconditional love, peace and joy are the life lessons you taught me by example. Rest in peace my beloved big Brother. You are sorely missed but eternally blessed.

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