God is the joy and the strength of my life, Removes all pain, misery and strife, He promised to keep me, never to leave me, He'll never, never fall short of His word. I've got to fast and pray, Stay in that narrow way, I'll keep my life clean everyday, I want to go with Him, when He comes back, I've come too far and I'll never turn back....
Mr. Bennie Strickland, 91, son of the late Truitt and Johnnie B. Strickland was born September 25, 1930 in La Grange, GA. He departed this life on Wednesday August 24, 2022 at the Gordon Hospice House in Statesville, NC. He was preceded in death by his parents, sister Ivy Lane Williamson and brother Amos Strickland, a sister Annie Truitt Burks, his only son Reginald Parker Strickland I, one granddaughter Ebony Lorice Gray Strickland and a sister Blanche Robinson.
At the age of 7, Bennie’s family moved to Cleveland, OH in 1937. He accepted Christ at a young age and was a member of The Providence Baptist Church where he first began to sing with the church choir.
At an early age, Bennie knew that he would sing and play for the Lord.
He then relocated to North Carolina in the early 60’s and began his singing ministry as the lead singer for several local Gospel Quartet groups that he formed himself. Mr. Bennie loved making music and was one of the most sought after male high-pitched singers in the Southeast. He was passionate about not only singing but, looking good when doing so. He took pride in ensuring that everyone in his group ‘Dressed to Impress”. Matching vibrant colored suits and shiny accessories was always a must have when performing in public.
He also recorded and traveled around the country ministering in states like Louisiana, Ohio, Washington DC, Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia and Kings Mountain, NC.
While traveling with local Gospel Quartets, Mr. Bennie met, courted and married Garenel Bridges on Oct. 17, 1969.
Mr. Bennie Strickland sung with the Thomas Brothers of Cleveland OH and was the founder and lead singer of the following Gospel Quartet Groups: The Five Stars, The DMS Celestials, The Stricklanetts and most recently until his death The Strickland Singers. Two of his favorite songs was: “Operator” and “Sweepin through the City” Mr. Bennie was proud of all he’d accomplish as an Gospel Quartet singer and decided to record his own rendition of the song, “Operator”. He was also the producer of "The Spirit Filled Songbirds."
Mr. Bennie, was employed by Dole Mills in Shelby, NC and then later retired early from PP& G Mills in Waco, NC, where he then decided to play full-time for several local churches in the city of Shelby NC and Kings Mountain, NC areas including FOCUS Missionary Baptist Church, Shelby, NC.
In 2020, Bennie and his wife relocated to Statesville, NC where they attended New Faith Trinity Church, Statesville, NC.
He leaves to cherish his memory, his wife of 52 yrs Garenel Strickland, four daughters, Linda Strickland-Rencher (William), Lorice Banks and De’borah Strickland all of Cleveland, OH and Regina Strickland of Winston-Salem, NC, Special Daughter in Love Treva Strickland Saunders (Reginald). Ten grandchildren- Cornelius Strickland Sr., DeJuan Banks, Leroy Banks Sr., Jerlyn Banks-Edwards, Antoine Strickland Sr., RaJhene S. Wood, Reginald T. Strickland, Minister Reginald P. (Miquattia) Strickland II, Jaleil T. Strickland and Mone’t Y. Strickland, Thirteen Great grandchildren and Five Great-great grandchildren. A host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
Special Acknowledgements goes to his caretakers: Minister Reginald P. Strickland II, Jaleil T. Strickland, Mone’t Y. Strickland & Treva Strickland-Saunders.
Special Thanks to The Entire Brookdale Assistant Living Staff: Liz Turner, Whitney Singleton, Cierra Rouse, Brittany Herald, Ms. Barbara Eckles and Mr, Steve Ashby-Exc. Director. Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Staff in Winston-Salem NC and Gordon Hospice House Staff of Statesville, NC.