Whitesburg KY

Brother’s death saddens family

Hello to everyone in Mountain Eagle land. It’s been a long time since I’ve written to the Eagle.

News has been plenty, but lots of it has been sad news.

My brother Joe Gibson passed away on New Year’s Day, Jan. 1, 2018.

It was so sudden and all the family has been so heartbroken.

I have been trying for two months to write this. We are all so sad and just lost for words.

All the family need your prayers that God will somehow and some way ease our pain and comfort his family, especially his daughter Shelia Ashley and her husband Paul, his son Michael Joe and his wife Lena, and the grandchildren and greatgrandchildren. I know they miss him so much.

We three sisters, Jean, Shirley and I, and brother Doug miss him already. We miss the phone calls. Almost once a week we talked to him.

Joe was a wonderful person, never saw a stranger and was a friend to many people.

At the age of 20, Joe was drafted into the U.S. Army, training at Camp Pickett, Va. He was shipped overseas in November 1952 to Korea for 18 months and was a Korean war veteran. He was awarded the Good Conduct Medal, UN Service Medal, and Korean Service Medal. He was in the 24th Division, infantry and medics. He was discharged in 1954 while stationed at Fort Knox.

While he was in Korea, he got to visit our brother Douglas who was serving with the U.S. Army and was also stationed in Korean at that time. With God’s mercy and Mother and Daddy’s prayers, they returned home safe.

Many folks in Letcher County never have heard about Joe’s passing. His funeral was held at Hindman

Funeral Home in Knott County.


Joe had been living in Whitesburg for the past two or three years. His granddaughter Kendra Sexton visited him quite often. She lives in Whitesburg. Sadly two or three months before he died, Kendra found out she had breast cancer. Joe was devastated. He was so worried about her. He was such a good granddaddy to the grandchildren and greatgrandchildren.

Kendra’s mom Shelia sure has had a lot of grief in the last six months. I think Kendra is doing very well after surgery. We just keep praying for her and hoping God will heal her. God bless Kendra’s husband Ken Sexton. He has been so wonderful to her.

My sister Norma Jean and I have really been enjoying this weather in Florida. She and I are snowbirds. I come down here to Northport, Fla., in the winter. Jean has been here since October 2017. She lives in Port Charlotte, Fla. In November, she had a slight heart attack and had to have a stent put in. She has been doing fairly well.

Her son Billy and wife Dawn had a birthday dinner for her and got together at his home in Sarasota, Fla. She was 82 years (young) on Feb. 15. God has surely blessed her abundantly.

My sister Shirley had knee replacement Feb. 7. She’s been in lots of pain, but she’s doing therapy now. She always comes down to spend time with Norma Jean and me for a couple of months. She lives in Canton, Ohio, about a mile down the street from my home. She and I are busy gong to church and going on trips with our church family when I’m up there.

She had a big birthday on March 10. She was 77. God sure has been good to our family.

On Dec. 6, my daughter Beverly had surgery on her shoulder (rotocuff ). She did very well, but so much pain. She did therapy and on Dec. 27, she and her husband Bryan came down from Wisconsin to visit me. He worked three or four days on my sheds putting new wood on the outside of them.

Beverly was doing her therapy on her arm and shoulder with an arm lift therapy chair. I was so enjoying their company then on Jan. 1 sad news came about Joe. So they took me to Kentucky for the funeral. God was sure with us all in all this traveling.

The family of our brother Joe have our heartfelt thanks for the love and comfort they all showed during the time of our pain and sorrow, those traveling far and near, nephews, nieces, cousins, relatives, friends and neighbors.

God bless everyone until the next writing. I will try and get good news in next time. From Symolene and the Gibson family.

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