Educator DORCAS LOIS (WILLIAMS) CRAVENS remembered today.

“She was born on June 24, 1933, in Indianapolis, Indiana. She was the first of seven children born to the union of the late Pastor James Oliver and Margaret Nora (Stone) Williams. She confessed Jesus Christ at an early age at the 22nd Street Church Of God In Christ (COGIC) under the pastorate of Elder David A. Reed, Sr.

Dorcas’ formative education was received in the Indianapolis Public School System at School #56 and School #26. She graduated from Crispus Attucks High School in 1951. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Indiana Central College (currently the University of Indianapolis), and a Master of Science degree from Indiana University, Bloomington.

Dorcas’ professional career started with the Indiana Bell Telephone Company. Eventually after earning her bachelor’s degree, she began working in the educational field to pursue her childhood desire of being a teacher.

Dorcas’ career as an educator spanned thirty-four years in the Indianapolis Public School System at School #56, Crispus Attucks High School, Shortridge High School, and George Washington High School. She influenced the lives of numerous students teaching English and Film Criticism. In a Shortridge Echo article interview, one piece of advice she offered to students was, “study hard, stay in school; then mountains will become molehills.”

Dorcas was a devoted wife to her late husband, Mark A. Cravens, Jr., enjoying 60 years of marriage. She was also a devoted mother to her two sons, John E. Johnson, Jr., and Mark A. Cravens, V. Her devotion extended to all her family, including making annual visits to her paternal uncle and aunts in Richmond, Virginia, and other relatives in Virginia for many years.

Because of Dorcas’ love for young people, she was the go-to person for advice from her sons’ neighborhood friends and young girls needing a mother figure. She also inspired and encouraged students to pursue careers in the educational field.

Dorcas enjoyed reading autobiographies and novels, bowling, taking walks with her sister, Rosetta, at the Lafayette Square Mall, and doing crossword puzzles. She had a great love for Gospel music, particularly listening to WTLC radio's Gospel Explosion with Delores “Sugar” Poindexter and Al "The Bishop" Hobbs.

Dorcas was a charter member and ardent supporter of Citadel of Faith Church of God in Christ. She was a former member of the International Girls Aid League, the Indiana Teachers Association, and the Indiana Education Association.

Dorcas was endowed with such an outgoing personality that “she never met a stranger.” She had many friends, no mere acquaintances.

On November 25, 2022, Dorcas Lois (Williams) Cravens departed this life at the age of eighty-nine years. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, and a sister, Esther Laura Rivera. She will be greatly cherished and sorely missed.

She leaves to cherish her memory: sons, John Ezra Johnson, Jr. (Lisa) and Mark Augustus Cravens V; four sisters, Rosetta Virginia Brown, Betty Pearl Beaven, Clara Marie Flowers, and Mary Margaret Williams; one brother, Jerry Oliver Williams; grandsons, Jarann Johnson (Jaci) and Bryce Johnson; three generations of nephews and nieces, a host of other relatives and friends, and church family.


Saturday, December 10, 2022 at 9:00 AM

Emmanuel Christian Fellowship Center

3400 N. Post Road, Indianapolis, IN 46226

Celebration of Life:

Saturday, December 10, 2022 at 11:00 AM

Emmanuel Christian Fellowship Center

3400 N. Post Road, Indianapolis, IN 46226


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