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Alethea Vermetta (Calloway) Franklin

September 28, 1956 ~ December 23, 2019 (age 63)


Alethea Vermetta Calloway Franklin is known as Lee. She was born in N.E. Washington, D.C. to Earl and Marian Clara Waters Calloway.  While her brother Carlton Reed Calloway lived with my mother Marian and Earl, the eldest Earl Junior lived with his mom during a prior marriage.  Marian and Earl gave birth to the eldest Auburn Ralph, Angelique Michelle, Mark Arnett, and of course Alethea Vermetta Calloway.  We lived on Banks Place in Northeast, Washington, DC.  Lee has been survived by her son Brandon Douglas Rohrbach as her only child.

Lee’s family moved to Congress Street in Southeast, DC in June of 1962.  She was educated at Abram Simon Elementary, Charles Hart Junior High, and graduated from Ballou High School.  Shen graduated with a Psychology BA degree from the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley.  She earned her MBA at the University of California Irvine. (By the way, she was told in eighth grade by a teacher that she never would amount to anything and was too slow to learn.  When she told my mother, who was a teacher, my mother instilled and UNLEASHED A SPIRIT OF RELENTLESS EDUCATIONAL Drive!)

She continued many different facets of education by becoming a Licensed Real Estate Broker, CPCU, Financial Investor’s earning Series 7 and more as she was 2017 Student of the Year at Howard County Community College.   

Lee has been a WOD…. Woman of Distinction. She was a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority incorporated. Lee gave back to her community as she was the Director of the Columbia Maryland chapter of the Boys Scouts of America.

Lee’s career began after graduating from college in Greely Colorado, Lee traveled with American Airlines as a Scheduling Reservationist for a short while.  She advanced to become an Independent Insurance Agent/Consultant and Real Estate Broker for over 40 years having worked in Los Angeles County and Orange County California to Laurel, Md.  When the sales of Consulting got slow, she has taken on work in Financial Auditing with the Federal Government.

Lee has been a devout loving mother to Brandon.  While she had challenges relocating back to the east coast with her son, she remained steadfast as she networked with AKA sorority sisters and the Chamber of Commerce while balancing a Directorship of the Boy Scouts. Of course, her son, Brandon excelled to the top of his ranks as well.  Lee has contributed to communities and generated respect, love and admiration for many.

Lee was briefly married to Michael Franklin while living in Riverside, CA.  Although that marriage did not produce any children, later in life, she became a devoted and loving mother to her son Brandon. 

Lee battled asthma as did her mother.  Asthma was a lifelong challenge. She decided to go to Colorado where the air was thinner/dryer allowing her better quality of life and health better than the humid days in DC.  She broadened her scope of diversity by traveling worldwide during the summers.

Lee adopted her mother’s warmth, compassion, loving and easy-going demeanor that proved to have a lifelong effect on Lee’s relationships.  In 1962 during gentrification of SE Washington DC, Lee would by God’s grace develop the most astounding lifelong friendships.  Lee prayed and played, laughed and learned from several neighbors who were teachers and administrators like our mother.  Lee was enriched with enjoying and excelling in sports like skiing, golf and bowling professional scores with league travel, camping and joined various community organizations. Once experiencing the natural splendor and beauty of the Rocky Mountains nearby, Lee’s passion to hike and enjoy the outdoors by camping became more prevalent. Lee has been an avid outdoors-woman at highest level literally all her life.

Lee was a warrior as she battled cancer and a debilitating stroke. She will be remembered most for her warm personality and ability to nurture meaningful relationship with whomever she met. 

To send flowers to Alethea's family, please visit our floral store.


Memorial Service
January 4, 2020

1:00 PM
Donaldson Funeral Home of Clarksville, P. A.
12540 Clarksville Pike, Rt 108
Clarksville, Maryland 21029

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