KCUR did an amazing series on the lives lost to COVID 19. One of our client’s mother, Iola Mae, was beautifully commentated.
Iola, a mother to nine, was one of the first people to die of coronavirus in Kansas at Riverbend Acute Post Rehabilitation.
Iola Mae Herviey loved her nine children with such a fierce protectiveness her kids felt sorry for anyone who got in their way.
Herviey was strict, determined to make them into good kids. Her youngest, Darryll Fortune, had heard all the stories, of course. But something dawned on him about three-quarters into the April funeral for “Moma,” as he and 20 others watched her Zoom service from their respective homes, spread around the country.
“Wait a minute! Why is everybody talking about my Moma whooping ass?” he said. “I mean, everybody talked about her spanking and cussing folks out and it’s like, wait! And we just all bust up laughing.”
“They said, ‘Well, your Moma didn’t play.”
Iola Mae (Robinson) Herviey graduated from high school during World War II and raised nine children in Kansas City, Kansas, on her wages as a domestic worker. A life-long Christian, she buried four sons, three husbands and two siblings. She smoked unfiltered Pall Malls for years, telling her kids to eat their greens and drink water and they’d be fine. She never even had a surgery until she was in her mid-80s.