Saint John Baptist Church
"Blessed to be a Blessing: Evangelizing to the Lost and Empowering Lives"
Genesis 1:27-28; 12:1-3; Deuteronomy 28:1-14; Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 1:8
3404 West Beltline Boulevard
Columbia, South Carolina 29203
Church Office: 803-254-4170
Facsimile: 803-254-4036
Preparatory School: 803-256-8542

Member Highights

Ophelia Dreher Owens

I was born in Richland County on March 15, 1935 to Melton Dreher and Mary Ellen Peay. My siblings are: Melton Dreher Jr., Orene D. Godwin (deceased), Bernetha D. Williams, Nancy Dreher Reid Sulton (deceased), Moses Dreher (deceased), and Anthony Dreher, Sr.

I am a product of Booker Washington Heights Community here in Columbia, South Carolina where I attended and participated in Early Childhood Education in Richland County School District One. I attended and graduated from C. A. Johnson High School in 1952. I received a bachelor of arts degree from Benedict College in 1957 and a masters of education degree from South Carolina State College in Orangeburg, South Carolina in 1965. I continued my educated at Appalachian State University (Boone, North Carolina) and the University of South Carolina (Columbia).

In 1954, I married Alexander Owens, Sr and was blessed with three children: Alexander, Jr., Vernon (deceased), and Teri DeNease Wallace. I have three grandchildren: Aaron V. Wallace, Kierstyn C. Wallace, and Sheron A. Owens; four great-grandchildren: Amir A. Guess, Christian A. Wallace, Andersen H. Wallace, and Mia Fenell.

During my career in education, I was employed as an elementary school teacher in Lancaster County Public Schools, Fairfield County Public Schools, and Richland County Public Schools. I retired from Carver Elementary School in Columbia in 1989.

Because of my love of family and my desired to learn my history, I traced the four sides of my family trees (Drehers, Chavis, Peay, and Fords).

I am a life long member of Saint John Baptist Church. I was baptized at the age of ten by Reverend B. T. Sears. As an active member of Saint John, I served in many organizations of the church: secretary to the Sunday School Class #1, member of the Deaconess Board; secretary of the Fannie Mae Jones Missionary Circle, member of the Elder Club; coordinator of the Counts, Rogers, Wallace, and Worthy Family Ministry Unit, member of the Senior Musical Choir (61 years), and chairperson of the Archives Committee.

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