Clarence (“Mitch” or “Skip”) Butler Mitchell Jr. was born at 6:05 am on November 29, 1948 in Columbia, South Carolina to Margaret Miller Mitchell and Clarence Butler Mitchell, Sr.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Captain Clarence Butler Mitchell Sr, one of the first Black Firefighter Captains for the City of Columbia Fire Department and Mrs. Margaret Miller Mitchell. Clarence was the oldest and only son of three children born to Clarence and Margaret Mitchell. He was raised in Columbia, South Carolina and attended Richland County District One Public Schools, graduating from C. A. Johnson High School in 1966. While growing up, he attended and was baptized at Friendship Baptist Church located at 1237 House Street in Columbia, South Carolina. Skip, as he was affectionately called, attended the University of South Carolina where he completed a year of General Studies. Before completing his degree, he was drafted into the United States Marine Corps in 1969 and served in the United States Army Reserve until 1974. He received a National Defense Service Medal and a Rifle Marksman Badge. After being honorably discharged from the Marine Corps, he relocated to Chicago, Illinois and obtained a Bachelor of Science degree at Chicago City College. While in Chicago, he served as a Junior Deacon under Rev. Clay Evans at Friendship Missionary Baptist Church. In 1985 Clarence moved to Houston, Texas and worked for multiple employers such as Xerox, Texas Workforce Commission, and Continental Airlines. His main career was a Vocational Counselor at the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center for 19 years from which he recently retired in 2020.
As a devoted Christian, he was a member of St. Agnes Missionary Baptist Church for 28 years. Later, he served as a Deacon at Calvary Hill Baptist Church in Houston, Texas. In his spare time, he enjoyed bike riding and competed in the MS150 races as a member of the VA bicycling team several times. He also enjoyed fishing, singing solos in the choir, watching Kung Fu movies and old western movies as he was a true cowboy at heart.
In pursuing his passion of literary studies and exploration of African American culture, he created a book publishing company named “C. Mitchell and Company” in 1990. One of the highlight publications was a compilation of the Inaugural Barack Obama presidential inauguration memoirs.
He leaves to cherish fond memories, Juanita Fontenot Mitchell and four children: Nia Aisha Williams (Jessie), Audrea Melody Burns (Troy), Hodari Najee-Lamar Mitchell, and Clarence Joseph Mitchell III; Five Grandchildren: Bryce Troy Burns, Brock Troy Burns, Elisha Troy Burns, Ronia Imani Washington, Chai Princess Crutcher; Two sisters: Sheryl Mitchell Turner of Columbia, SC and Jill Mitchell Powell (Russell) of Charlotte, NC; Nieces and Nephews: Carl Powell, Matthew Powell, Roscoe W. Turner, Nichole Turner-Wright, and a host of loving relatives, extended family and friends.
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