Linda Laverne Roberson, 67, 30-year public school teacher

Posted: July 17, 2014

IF YOU WERE the parent of a student of Linda Laverne Roberson and your child was having some problems in school, you might expect a knock on your door.

Linda was a teacher who cared. She never hesitated to go to the homes of students who might have needed an extra boost academically to chat with their parents.

Even after she retired, she wasn't through helping former students via her Facebook page. At least 600 contacted her that way with a blizzard of questions. Some might have been in college and needed academic help, maybe the editing of a school paper.

She was also there for those with personal problems, such as marriage issues, child-raising, whatever, and Linda never turned anyone away. She was always available with her wisdom and concern.

The former Linda Freeman, who was also an excellent artist, specializing in portraiture, and ran a successful eBay store in her retirement, died Saturday of cancer. She was 67 and lived in Germantown.

"She influenced so many lives," said her daughter Aliya F. Browne. "She took deep pride in knowing that she was affecting the lives of so many young persons, and felt that this was her calling."

Linda was born in Philadelphia to Arthur "Frances" Lee and Charles William Alexander McTier. She graduated from Simon Gratz High School and went on to Temple University, where she received her bachelor's degree in education in 1971.

She began her teaching career at FitzSimons Junior High School, then moved to Gillespie Junior High before going back to her alma mater, Simon Gratz, to finish out 30 years as an English teacher.

"Linda had a reputation as a tough but fair teacher who was committed to teaching," her family said. "She was an 'old school' educator who often knocked on her students' doors to speak with their parents when necessary."

After retiring, Linda opened a store on eBay, Glittergirljewelry, where she was able to continue her love of antiquing. She sold vintage handbags, jewelry, dolls and an assortment of collectibles. She enjoyed finding bargains and making a profit.

She frequented flea markets, auctions and yard sales to find hidden treasures. She was so successful that she began selling items for a growing list of clients.

As an artist, Linda was pretty much self-taught. Her favorite medium was watercolor, and she painted landscapes as well as portraits cherished by her subjects.

"She was a dynamic person," her daughter said. "She liked to make jokes and have a good time. She enjoyed a good game of pinochle."

Besides her daughter, she is survived by four other daughters, Benyasa Jean Freeman, Manette Yolanda Ellison, Saulette Raquel and Jessica Jewel Tyler; a son, Saul David Roberson; a sister, Cheryl Y. Gibbs; a brother, Charles W.A. Freeman; and nine grandchildren.

Services: 11 a.m. Saturday at Living Water United Church of Christ, 6250 Loretto Ave. Friends may call at 9 a.m. Burial will be in Chelten Hills Cemetery.

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