September 16, 1949 ~ February 5, 2021

Born in: Bronx, NY
Resided in: Indianapolis, IN

Celia Ellen Greene-Purvis “Cookie” was born on September 16, 1949 in the Bronx, NY to the late Warren Greene, Sr. and Odessa Lee (Wilson) Greene. Additionally, eight other siblings, Warren Green (Garla), Norma Fagans (James), Melvin Greene (Dissiree), Gerald Greene (Debera), Thelma Brown, Sharon Greene (Walter Truxler), Mitzi Greene and William Greene celebrated her life journey. She received her education in the New York City school system.

A songbird with the talent to harmonize with anyone, Cookie would hone her skills singing with her friends in the Bronx. After moving to Indianapolis, IN in the late 70’s, Cookie would become a Pharmacist Technician at St. Vincent Hospital. But not being able to shake the calling of music, she would later lend her voice as the lead singer in several local bands. Cookie’s home was always filled with music and it was common for her to have living room singing sessions with her nieces, children, and friends.

Cookie’s love for children was evident when, in the early 80’s, she babysat for 13 kids at one time, in order to stay home and raise her three children. Her impact was so great, that most of these children still refer to her as their “Aunt Cookie”. After working as the Senior’s Activity Coordinator at a Community Center she helped create a decade before, Cookie once again turned her attention to the care of children and became a foster mother and adopted two daughters. Her love and knack for being a caregiver blossomed into a successful career training other foster parents to care for the most vulnerable children. A career she took much pride in, and her students fondly recall her teachings and techniques years later.

On April 12. 2000, Cookie married Warren Purvis of Elizabeth City, NC, and together they adopted 8 more children and fostered more than 100. The Purvis’ home quickly became one of the most sought-after foster homes and they also won the Foster Parents of the Year Award multiple times. Often referred to as the glue that kept her family together, Cookie rarely met a stranger and if she liked you, you were family.

Surrounded by the love of her husband, two of her daughters, and her best friend of over 40 years, Cookie was called home on Friday, February 5, 2021. She leaves behind to cherish her memory and continue her legacy of love and caregiving her husband, Warren Purvis, her children: Andrea Moore (Gary), Damien Greene, Nicole Boone (Shawn), Ashley Purvis, Lisa O’Vivion (Mike), Joslyn Purvis, Nicole Greene (Chris), Stephanie Purvis, Vajaun Love (Tyrese), Devin Purvis, London Purvis, Colin Purvis and Dexter Purvis. Daughters-in-Love: Yolanda Moffitt-Santiago (Deceased), and Sophia Brisker. 24 grandkids and 7 great-grandchildren. And a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and family both blood and love born.

She was preceded in death by her father, Warren E. Greene, Sr., mother, Odessa L. Greene, sister, Norma Fagans, and Brother, Gerald Greene.

Cookie’s Facebook page will remain active and all are welcome to share memories and final words to her there.


Memorial Service: February 20, 2021 12:00 pm

Lavenia & Summers Home For Funerals
5811 East 38th Street
Indianapolis, IN 46218

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  1. Mommy I love you with all heart ❤ I you made me how strong I am today. You always said that you chose me and lord knows it took me to growing up to really feel that. You are such an amazing woman. You will forever be my mommy. Your all I know all I am. I don’t see adoption I see growing up with my many sisters and brothers, Outings, smores by the fireplace, me just sitting talking to you about anything. You have always been my best friend. You mean the world to be I am sad your not here yes. I do know that we serve a mighty God and you are truly at peace now. I will try to hold back my tears as you would have wanted me to. I forever cherish our many memories. I love you mommy ❣

  2. Precious little sister I was 10 years old when you were born. I remember when you took your first steps, graduated from high school, had your babies. I miss you already but I know that you are with the rest of our family and friends, and you are free of pain. Much love little sister until we meet again.

  3. I am so saddened by this great loss. Death is such a powerful enemy. No one can escape it, and yet we never become immune to its affect every time it pays us a visit.
    Cookie was my little sister through marriage and we never stopped seeing ourselves as family. Over the last few years the Gaut and Green families have both lost many loved ones. My mom Ernestine, my other mom Odessa, sisters Norma, Alice, brothers Samuel(Sammy), Jerry and Sammy’s wife Brenda, aunts Carrie and Willie and others.
    I have faith that we will all see Cookie again as well as all of these
    countless others that we have all lost in death.
    To the family; have courage, stay strong and believe that there is a wonderful future ahead for Cookie. And all of these other dear ones that we’ve lost. A future that God has promised. One that will be free of pain and suffering.

  4. I have loved you with all my heart and forever as my aunt and my father’s middle sister. Although, I had lost many years with you and my other family members. On top of that, I have missed you very much. Love always Gina.

  5. To my sister friend, E Faye Holmes, and family of Cookie. I know Cookie meant alot to you and everyone that was fortunate to know her. I am praying that you and the family will find peace and comfort in all the beautiful memories that you have to cherish and share. Rest in Heaven beloved Celia Ellen “COOKIE” Green-Purvis

  6. In loving memory dear cousin from the Bronx to Elizabeth City and Indianapolis. Will miss your presence but so glad to know you’re whole and home, rejoicing in heaven with your Lord. And reunited with those gone ahead. Vernette and family.

  7. Dearest Celia Ellen, there are no words to express my love for you and all you meant to me. We will sing together again. You will always be in my heart. Rest now sweet angel.

  8. Our prayers are for the family of Celia Greene-Purvis and our members Melvin & Dissiree Greene for comfort and peace. We pray these words will give you peace. John 14:1-3 “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you; and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. Emmanuel M.B. Church, Pastor Darryl Webster

  9. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Greene-Purvis family. Please continue to hold onto God’s unchanging hands.
    Dr. Ossie & Melissa Purvis

  10. To Warren, her siblings, children and loved ones. You have my deepest condolences. Cookie always welcomed me with open arms and even allowed me to spend my first Thanksgiving in Indiana with her before Que arrived. She will always remain a cherished soul. You all are loved and in my thoughts.
    Nneka Greene

  11. Cookie was an amazing woman and fierce warrior who championed children and advocated with all her heart. But more than that she walked her talk. She raised strong children and I admire all of them for the beautiful and great people they all are. And Warren – may you have peace in your heart as you walk your path.

  12. Cookie was an amazing woman and a fierce advocate for children. Holding all of her family in my heart. I was blessed to know her.

  13. Warren and family, as I sit watching the celebration of my sister/friend Cookie’s life, I am feeling so sad that I am not there with you. I watched my God babies Vj and Collin be so strong knowing how badly I wanted to just take the pain away. Thank you all in the Greene/Purvis family for sharing the love of this family and the love of Cookie with meover 32 yrs. We met in a nursing home working together in North Carolina and I have been one of you every since. Even though we didn’t see or call each other every day or months at a time. The love and sisterhood allowed us to resume our friendship like we never missed a day. I will forever love and be a part of this family and one of Cookie’s sisters. I miss her so. Love you all beyond measure. God bless you all and I will be in NC with open arms.

  14. To the family of Purvis, Greene my condolences and prayers for your family and comfort and healing and strength m.
    Ckeene & family

  15. To the family of Celia “Cookie” Greene-Purvis: My heart goes out to you for your loss. May God watch over each of you and comfort you in this time of need. I will keep you all in my prayers. Cookie was a very caring and loving person. She always made you feel welcome. She will be missed dearly. 🙏

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