Billie Jo Walker Gaskins, 75, of Venus, Fla., went to rest and be with her Lord, Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2013, in Lehigh Acres, Fla., after a courageous 14-year battle with cancer.
She was born March 2, 1938, in McMinnville, Tenn., to parents James Thomas and Linnie Belle Kirby Walker.
Billie Jo met and married the love of her life, Thomas Gaskins Jr., on Oct. 16, 1971, in Nashville, Tenn. She graduated from Lipscomb University in Nashville, and worked for 20 years for Alico, first as an administrative assistant, finally working as a Corporate Secretary. Billie Jo was a member of Central Church of Christ for many years. She never met a stranger, and always made a friend anywhere she went.
Billie Jo leaves behind her loving husband of 42 years, Thomas Gaskins Jr. of Venus; two wonderful sons, Thomas (Jennifer) Gaskins III of LaBelle, Fla., and James (Elise) Gaskins of Lake Placid, Fla.; six of the greatest, adorable, loving grandchildren anyone could ask for, Sadie, Thomas, Walker, Summer, Lily Jo and Wesley; two brothers, James Morris Walker and Larry Thomas Walker, both of McMinnville; and a host of extended family and friends.
Visitation will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. today, Friday, Dec. 20, 2013, at Akin-Davis Funeral Home in LaBelle. A Celebration of Billie Jo’s life will be held at noon Saturday, Dec. 21, 2013, at Central Church of Christ in LaBelle, with Minister Steven Hildebrand officiating. Interment will take place at Oak Ridge Cemetery in Arcadia, Fla., immediately following the celebration Saturday.
In lieu of flowers, Billie Jo’s family has requested donations to the following charity organizations: Mount Dora Christian Home, 301 W. 13th Ave., Mount Dora, FL 32757; Florida Cancer Specialists Foundation (FCS Foundation), 4371 Veronica S. Shoemaker Blvd., Fort Myers, FL 33916; Hope Hospice — Development Office, 9470 HealthPark Circle, Fort Myers, FL 33908; or Florida Sheriffs Youth Ranches Inc., P.O. Box 2000, Boys Ranch, FL 32064.
Arrangements are by Akin-Davis Funeral Home, LaBelle.