Estella "Stella" Lee Square Banks was born to the union of Clara Byrd and Willie T. Square, Sr. on October 13, 1937 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She was the oldest of twelve children. She departed her earthly life on Sunday, July 26, 2020 at her residence in Baton Rouge, Louisiana at the age of 82. Celebration of Life Services: (FRIDAY) July 31, 2020 First Walk-Through Viewing 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. Miller and Daughter Mortuary, 5905 Zachary-Slaughter Highway, Zachary, Louisiana 70791 (SATURDAY) August 1, 2020 Second Walk Through Viewing 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. Beech Grove Baptist Church, 9455 Elm Grove Garden Drive, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70807. Following Funeral Service: Limited Capacity: Admit Card, Facial Mask, and Social Distancing Required 11:00 a.m. – 12 noon Internment southern Memorial Gardens George Washington Carver Lakefront, 3012 Blount Road Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70807. Sister Banks was reared in a family with strong Christian values. She accepted Jesus Christ to be her Lord and Savior at an early age and was baptized by the late Reverend Joe Carter at Beech Grove Baptist Church in Scotlandville. She served as a church secretary for sixty years, from age 12 to 72. She remained faithful under the pastoral care of Elder Marshall Hall for 36 years. Though her health became challenging, she was supportive of the selection of Reverend Kelvin Cowan as pastor of her home church. She was especially excited to be in fellowship with her daughters at their respective churches, Greater King David Baptist Church, under the leadership of John E. Montgomery, II and Westgate Church in Port Allen, La, under the leadership of Alfred Moore, III. On December 17, 1960, she was united in Holy matrimony to Charlie "Moon" Banks, Sr. This union was blessed with four children; Chauna Danielle, Charlie Jr, Chalonda DuShawn, and Chad Dynell. Stella was a 1956 member of the inaugural graduating class of Scotlandville Junior-Senior High School. A 1960 graduate of Southern University, she majored in English, minored in Social Studies and became a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. She later certified in Guidance and Counseling (1984). She also received her master's Degree plus 30 in Administration and Supervision (1986) from Southern University A&M College. Forever a lifelong learner, she participated in career enrichment programs at Louisiana State University, University of Florida, TRIO Programs (Tulsa, Oklahoma), East Baton Rouge Parish School System, and Louisiana Department of Education. Stella taught English and Reading at Scotlandville High School, McKinley Junior High, Southern University Laboratory School, SU Upward Bound, SU Project Stay, and Zachary High School . She made a career transition as a guidance counselor at Zachary High , and Interim Asst. Principal at Baker Senior High School. She was also a faculty member for the first integrated Summer School in EBRPSS (1969, 70). After 35 years of devoted services and semi-retirement, she opened the North Baton Rouge Learning Center. She simultaneously worked as an External Teacher Evaluator for the Louisiana Department of Education throughout the parish. Sister Banks leaves to mourn her passing three loving and devoted children, Chauna Danielle Banks, Chalonda Banks Hollins, Chad Dynell Banks (Brandy), Smyrna, Georgia; grandchildren, Clint Audwin Berry (Dominique), Falyn Le'Shay and Chase DeShane Hollins, Chandler Royal Banks, Smyrna, Ga; two great grandchildren, Maxwell Rene Slaughter and Charlotte Ankhinna Berry; seven sisters, Laura Square Lang (Noah, Sr.), Bonnie Square Jackson, Daisy Square Beck, Denver, Colorado, Beatrice Square White (Lynell, Sr.), Baker, Mildred Square Carrethers, Dallas, Texas, Sharolyn Square Morgan, Stone Mountain, Georgia and Tamara Square, Fairburn, Georgia; three brothers, Willie T. Square, Jr. (Mary), Moore, Oklahoma, Robert L. Square, Sr, (Sarah), Baker, and Percy L. Square (Michelle), Dacula, Georgia; special nieces, Cheryl Square and Wanda London Armwood; god-daughter, Nikki Forbes; sisters-in-law Velma Banks Williams, and Gladys Banks Carter, Columbia, South Carolina, aunts-in-law, Annie Jackson Johnson and Idella Broaden Jackson; a host of nieces, nephews, relatives, friends and co-workers. Preceding her in death is her husband, Charlie Banks, Sr.; son, Charlie Banks, Jr.; parents, Willie T. Square, Sr. and Clara Byrd Square; parents-in-laws, Rodessa Jackson and Isaac Banks, brother Arthur Daniel Square.
Published in The Advocate from Jul. 31 to Aug. 1, 2020.