Tresia Marie McClain , 89, former first lady of Shiloh Baptist Church (Scranton, PA), departed to be with the Lord on Friday, November 3, 2017 at her home in Iselin, NJ surrounded by family. She was the beloved wife of (the late) Reverend Reginald Denny McClain, Sr. whom she met while in high school. This handsome soldier known as “Reggie” swept her off her feet and they eloped to Maryland and were married on February 27, 1947. Seven children were born to their union with the addition of one adopted daughter. They were married for 64 years before his death. She was born on March 12, 1928 to the late Reverend Robert Hick Gantt and Etta Mae Ford in Jeanette, PA. She was the tenth of eleven children, all of whom have preceded her in death. She cherished the time she spent with her family, especially her grandchildren; she loved collecting music boxes and angels, she was a great baker and was known for her apple cobbler and sweet potato pies. She loved watching game shows, cowboy movies, golf and tennis. Her artistic ability was displayed in the numerous paintings she produced and shared with family and friends. She served as both an OB Technician and Nurses Aide. She received her GED in Eden, NC and was elated to get her driver’s license at 65 years of age. To become more eloquent and engaging, she successfully completed a public speaking course with high honors. Tresia accompanied her husband as he accepted the call to become Pastor of his first church Zion Hill Baptist Church and subsequently, she faithfully served as the First Lady of five additional churches in Pennsylvania, New York, and North Carolina. She took great pride being First Lady and faithfully served as a deaconess, sang on the senior choir, assisted with the youth, Sunday School, and occasionally chaired various program and fundraisers. Her door was always open for anyone; she had a big heart and the ability to listen, give excellent advice, and comfort. She was a virtuous woman, loving, caring and nurturing. She was the Matriarch, the foundation upon which her entire family was built – the ‘glue’ that held the family together but most importantly, she loved the Lord and was a God fearing woman. Tresia will be dearly missed by all who knew and loved her. She leaves to cherish wonderful memories of her life, seven beautiful children, Lawrence C. (Michelle) - New Jersey, Kevin P. (Cam) - New York, Coleman D. (Evalin) - Missouri, Simeon C. – Jeannette, Darlana Gonzalez (Bruce), Zionette Davis (Michael), and Carole Mason. She is also survived by a half-brother; William “Billy” Covetson; She was ‘Nana’ to her 84 precious grandchildren; 29 grandchildren; 40 great-grandchildren; and 15 great-great-grandchildren. She was adored by several nieces and nephews that she loved to the moon and back, and a host of cousins, other relatives, church family, neighbors and friends that she loved dearly. “Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all. Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.” Proverbs 31:28-30 (KJV) Relatives and friends are invited to celebrate the life of Tresia McClain from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. Friday at Rock of Refuge Congregational Church (Formerly Zion Hill Baptist Church), 102 Clay Ave., Jeanette. Services will be held at 1 p.m. with Rev. Coleman McClain officiating. Interment will follow in St. Clair Cemetery, Greensburg. In lieu of flowers, donations in Tresia McClain’s memory may be made to Shiloh Baptist Church, 1936 Wayne Ave., Scranton, PA 18504, for the establishment of the Rev. Reginald D. and Mrs. Tresia McClain Scholarship Fund. Arrangements by the CLEMENT L. PANTALONE FUNERAL HOME INC., 409 W. Pittsburgh St., Greensburg, PA 15601, 724-837-0020 wwwpantalone.com Natale N. Pantalone, supervisor.
Shiloh Baptist Church
1936 Wayne Ave., Scranton PA 18504