“The memories we gather & give connect our lives as long as we live.”
Celeste Marie Clarke was born on July 4, 1968, in Peekskill, New York to Hilda Gory-Rodriguez and Micheal Barge. She was known as “Choo-Choo” to her family. She was a 1985 graduate of the St. Anne Institute in Albany, New York.
Celeste was a lifelong traveler who made her home in New York, Louisiana, Florida, California and Arkansas. She loved to take road trips, go fishing, cook, write, read, garden, study history and make art. She worked at Group Living, Inc. in Arkadelphia, Arkansas for many years with clients who became family. She loved living by the lake in Hot Springs, Arkansas and frequently hosted friends and family.
She loved music, especially Michael Franks, Journey, Patsy Cline, Adele, Ed Sheeran, Adam Levine, Juicy J, Cypress Hill, A Tribe Called Quest, and Whitney Houston which she sang in the car at the top of her lungs. She was a history and politics buff who loved to talk about current events. She was a charming diva who connected with every person she met. She enjoyed sharing stories about her life experiences and was never afraid to speak her mind. When she wasn't traveling, she enjoyed watching reality TV and horror movies, but most of all, she was obsessed with the show Vikings and Norse Mythology. She was feisty, loud & loved.
Celeste was preceded in death by her husband, Karl St. John Clarke, her mother, Hilda Gory-Rodriguez, her father-in-law, Arthur Clarke, her grandmother, Audrey Gory, and her grandfather, Titus Gory.
Her memory will live on in the hearts of those she leaves behind, her four children, Adrienne Gory of Little Rock, AR, Angelica Clarke of Dallas, TX, Amani Mack-Sauls of Norfolk, VA, and Marcus Mack of Little Rock, AR; 3 grandchildren, Amir, Jalani, and Erwin; her father, Michael Barge; her mother-in-law, Marjorie Clarke; two sisters and one sister-in-law, Heather Gory-Jacobsen, Ardence Ebanks, and Andrea Clarke; one brother, Lennart Gory; seven beautiful nieces and nephews; and one daughter-in-law, Larissa Sauls.
She also leaves many beloved aunts, uncles, cousins, friends, and chosen family.
There will be two public memorial services, dates forthcoming, one in Arkansas and one in New York. She will be buried at Long Island National Cemetery in Farmingdale, NY with her late husband.