Erma M. (Bryars) Rudolph



Erma Merl Rudolph was born in America, Illinois on June 1, 1939. She was the fifth of ten children born to Leslie John Bryars and Fannie Robinson Bryars.

She received her education in the Pulaski County School system. Under the tutelage of her grandmother, Temple A. McNeil, and cousin, George H. McNeil. She attended grammar school at Hayes School in America. Erma was a 1957 graduate of Lovejoy High School, in Mound City, Illinois. After graduation she relocated to Indianapolis, Indiana.

Erma confessed her love for Christ at an early age and was baptized in Olmsted, Illinois and became a member of the American Free Will Baptist Church. Her Christian journey continued in Indianapolis, Indiana where she joined Progressive Baptist Church. Later, she joined with her husband at Mt. Moriah Baptist Church. Erma became a member of the Mt. Pleasant Missionary Baptist Church and served as a faithful member on the Missionary Board and the Mother’s Board.

On August 24, 1961, she was united in Holy Matrimony to George Lee Rudolph, to their union, four children were born: Patrice, Alonzo, Jeffrey and Katrina.

Erma was a loving wife, daughter, sister, mother, grandmother and friend to all who knew her. Erma attended Indiana School of Automation and received her certificate as a Keypunch Operator and was employed by Rexnord LinkBelt in 1967. She worked there until 1990 when the factory closed. Erma found employment with Switzer Corporation as a Computer Operator until she found her joy with working with children, following her Grandmothers footsteps. Erma opened up a Home Daycare and provided care for many children. Finally, Erma retired from the Pike Township School District in 2001 as a Special Education Teacher’s Assistant.

On December 29, 2018, Erma passed away peacefully and went home to be with the Lord. She was preceded in death by her parents, Leslie and Fannie Bryars; grandmother, Tempie McNeil; sisters, Laura Knight and Christine Bryars; three brothers: Leslie Valjean, George, Sr. and Jesse Bryars; and one daughter, Stephanie Jones.

Left to cherish her memory and continue her legacy are: her devoted husband, George Lee Rudolph; six children, Antonio Rudolph (Joan), Patrice Rudolph, Marguerite Hagger (Kent) of Copperas Cove, Texas, Alonzo Rudolph (Penny) of Moreno Valley, California, Jeffrey Rudolph (Kristin) of Trafalgar, Indiana and Katrina Knight (Terence) of Ft. Washington, Maryland; grandchildren: Geoffrey Goodin (Keena), Kendra Hagger, Kenneth Hagger (Lavata), Brittani Rudolph, Yasmine Rudolph, Gabriel Rudolph, Patrick Rudolph, Camille Knight, Amaza Rudolph, Bailee Rudolph, Olivia Knight and Caleb Knight; great-grandchildren: Kiara Goodin, Leo Harrell, Jayse Grove and Griffin Goodin; brother, Elmo Bryars of Chicago, Illinois; three sisters: Audrey Terrell of Charleston, Missouri, Debra Bryars of LaGrange, Illinois and Sherri Harvey of Georgetown, Texas; sisters-in-law: Mae Rudolph, Gloria Coleman, Elaine Adams and Janie Young; brothers-in-law, Gerald Rudolph and Kevin Rudolph; a host of nieces, nephews, loving relatives and friends.