Forest Lawn West Funeral & Cremation Service & Forest Lawn West Cemetery
4601 Freedom Drive, Charlotte, NC
May 18, 1918 – November 26, 2019
Billy Vinson Gibson, age 101 years and 6 months, passed away on November 26, 2019. Born May 18, 1918, in Great Falls, South Carolina, he resided in Charlotte for more than 70 years. A true American hero, Corporal Gibson was a veteran of World War II, serving in five different countries. He was wounded near the Battle of the Kasserine Pass in North Africa. After recovering, he served in Italy under General George Patton. A master storyteller, he could relay in great detail experiences from his war years. After discharge from the U.S. Army, he attended King Business College in Charlotte and then began work at Fredrickson Motor Express; he retired as credit manager there in 1984.
An avid sportsman, he moved from fishing with a cane and string as a small boy in the Catawba River to deep sea fishing in the Atlantic Ocean, catching a shark and other fish in a recent summer. He also loved bow hunting, competed in crossbow contests, won several awards, and once split an arrow with his expert aim!
For many years he served as an elder in the Presbyterian Church and as a leader for Eagle Scouts. Known for his kindness, generosity, hospitality, and sparkling blue eyes, Gibson had many friends who shared his love for country music, especially his favorite, “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain.” A talented poet, he wrote detailed narratives about special people and events in his life.
Not one to live in the past, he kept up with modern technology. He owned several computers, an iPad, a cell phone, multiple cameras, and scores of electrical cords. He produced numerous slide shows and videos to show to visitors and checked daily both his email and Facebook accounts. He was the proud owner of five vehicles ranging from a 1974 “Thing” to his beloved 2012 Ford Ranger. A frequent patron of Goodwill and consignment shops, he often found treasures that he distributed freely among family and friends. At times, he loaded his excess treasures into one of his vehicles and took them off to the flea market for someone else to appreciate.
Gibson is greatly missed by those he leaves behind. He is survived by his wife, Ruth Toney Conder, a friend for fifty years and his dedicated companion for the last nine. They were married in a lovely wedding chapel in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, and returned there to celebrate anniversaries. Other survivors include his children: Janet Gibson Windsor and husband Jim; Deborah Gibson and special friend Mondo; Eric Gibson; and Donna Gibson; three grandchildren: Justin Windsor and wife Lana; Dylan Clifton and wife Clarice; and Derek Clifton; and seven great grandchildren. Two grandchildren are deceased: Alex Gibson and Josh Windsor. Several devoted nieces, nephews, cousins and multiple other family members and friends also mourn his passing.
Special thanks go to friend Holly Brewster, to Dr. Michael Friedland and Nurse Crystal, and to the staff of Atrium Hospital Pineville.
Family visitation and a memorial service will be held at Forest Lawn West Funeral and Cremation Service, 4601 Freedom Drive, Charlotte, NC 28208, on Sunday, December 1, 2019. Visitation is 1:30-2:30, and the service at 3:00. Burial will follow in the Forest Lawn Cemetery. Flowers may be sent to the funeral home, or other memorials to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital or to the church of your choice.
- Visitation Sunday, December 1, 2019
- Funeral Service Sunday, December 1, 2019
- Committal Service Sunday, December 1, 2019
Cheryl Carter Ashe Bernhart
December 1, 2019
Every time we came up while the adults visited Uncle Billy gave us ice cream. He was a special person and saw so much in his life time. I wish I could have spent more time with him. I grew up and only saw him at reunions, but I will always remember him fondly.
November 28, 2019
I knew him so briefly, but I'll remember him forever.
Anne & Tommy Miller
November 27, 2019
So sorry for your loss. Fond memories for so many years. Love and sympathy to all the family. We Love you..
November 27, 2019
Billy had a life well lived and I was honored to have known him slightly and to have been in his company on occasion. He was well loved and loved well in return. May the Lord bless and keep Billy and his family.