Mr. Garceal McClain, Sr. and Mrs. Joyce Holmes McClain welcomed their first child, Rukiya Ponyee, to their nurturing home on October 26, 1974. Rukiya was a gentle soul whose love for the Lord, her family, and strong work ethics were evident early in life.
At a young age, Rukiya gave her life to Christ and was baptized at Saint Joseph Baptist Church. Later in life, she joined Roebuck Church of Christ.
Rukiya attended Wilson Elementary School, Glenn Middle School and graduated from P.D. Jackson Olin High School in 1993. She attended the University of Alabama at Birmingham and graduated in 2001 with a bachelor's degree in Psychology.
Rukiya began her work career in 2003 with the Alabama Department of Human Resources as a Social Service Case Associate. In 2015, she seized an opportunity to demonstrate her technical talents with the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and was employed as an Office Specialist, Program Administrator, Human Resources Management Specialist, and Human Resources Communications Specialist.
Rukiya was a member of several professional organizations and shared her love for others by volunteering with The Links, Incorporated, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, Eastern Star, Junior League of Birmingham, and Meals on Wheels. She was also a member of numerous other professional organizations including, the Mineral District Medical Society, International Association of Business Communicators, American Institute of Graphic Arts, Association for Talent Development, Public Relations Society of America, and the University of Alabama at Birmingham National Alumni Society.
Her father, Mr. Garceal McClain, Sr. and her brother, Mr. Kasmon Taurius McClain, preceded Rukiya in death.
On Friday, June 25, 2021, Rukiya was granted eternal rest. Her earthly presence will be profoundly missed by her mother, Mrs. Joyce Holmes McClain, brother, Mr. Garceal McClain, Jr., nephews, Fabriel McClain and Braxton McClain, and nieces, Garnier McClain, Mya McClain, and Brooklyn McClain of Birmingham, Alabama.
Others left to cherish her memory are Mr. Robert Holmes, Mr. Michael D. Holmes, Mr. Michael Holmes, Mr. Anthony Holmes (Felecia); Mrs. Robbie Pearl (Keith) Benson, Mrs. Rosemary Range, Ms. Jettie McClain and Mr. Aaron McClain. A host of other family members and friends whose lives were touched by Rukiya will also miss her sweet spirit.
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