William "Bill" Lafayette Ashburn III
July 11, 1934 – June 26, 2018
William (Bill) Lafayette Ashburn III, born on July 11, 1934 in Denison, Texas, to the late Blanch Ashburn and the late William Lafayette Ashburn, Jr., passed away at age 83 on June 26, 2018. There are so many things that happened in between those two dates. He graduated from Texas A & M University in 1956 and served in the Army from 1956 to 1958. He was owner and operator of Ashburn’s Ice Cream until the business was sold in 1979. Bill worked as an insurance agent at McKinney-Harwell and as an independent agent until retiring in 2018. Bill was the loving husband of Yvonne Ashburn. He was preceded in death by his sisters, Peggy Skaggs and her husband R.L. and Lois Pace and her husband Harold. Bill is survived by his wife, Yvonne Ashburn, sons, William (Bill) Lafayette Ashburn, IV and his wife Julie, Brian Ashburn and his wife Delinda, daughter, Lee Ann Ashburn, and brother, Don Ashburn and his wife Priscilla. Bill is also survived by his grandchildren, Earnie Ashburn, Quint Ashburn and his wife Maggie, John Brian Ashburn, Kristen Krauss and her husband Patrick, and Eric Ashburn. Bill was well loved by his nieces and nephews and cousins as well. The sentiment was very mutual. Donna Nora is especially noteworthy as she would regularly be the first emergency contact and would care for Bill until one of his children would arrive in Denison.
Bill loved tennis and was an avid player. He excelled at this sport at Denison High, Texas A & M, and in various tournaments all over Texas for many years. He especially enjoyed playing every Monday night for over 30 years with 3 of his good friends. To say that Bill loved his Aggies and Aggie sports is an understatement. He attended many games and studied Texas A & M athletics. He and his brother, Don, regularly discussed this topic. Bill was a devout member of Waples United Methodist Church. He served as a Sunday School teacher of the Fellowship Class. This class was so very dear to him. He was a faithful servant and encourager to the pastors and fellow members during his lifetime. He was a board member of Camp Fire, a member of Gideons International, and a member of Rotary International where he served a term as president. Bill was a well-known and well-loved member of the Denison community. He served one term as Mayor Pro Tem and as a board member for Water and Utilities. So many in the area have fond memories of Ashburn’s Ice Cream. Bill was a great face for the business. One of Ashburn’s slogans was “Quality Counts”. Bill lived his life this way. He was a man of character and quality.
Bill loved his hometown. Although Bill was a happy resident at The Renaissance Assisted Living facility since January of 2017, it hurt his heart to be living in Sherman. His family is sure that he was pleased that he died in the city that he loved. This being said, the caregivers at The Renaissance gave Bill excellent care and had a loving relationship with him. The ICU nurses at Texoma Medical Center are also so appreciated for the tender care and comfort they gave to Bill in his final hours.
There is not enough space to adequately write the accomplishments and details of Bill Ashburn’s life. The most important things are that Bill loved people. He never met a stranger and was an endless source of encouragement, wisdom and kindness. Bill loved his God. He trusted the Lord for his salvation, guidance, strength and direction. “Blessed are those who die in the Lord from now on. Yes, says the Spirit, they are blessed indeed, for they will rest from their hard work; for their good deeds follow them!” Revelation 14:13.
Friends and family members may attend the visitation on Thursday, June 28 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Waples United Methodist Church parlor, 830 W. Main St., Denison. A celebration of life will take place, officiated by Pastor Bill Ashburn and Pastor Cheryl Murphy, on Friday, June 29 at 11:30 a.m. at Waples United Methodist Church sanctuary, 830 W. Main St., Denison. Bratcher Funeral Home is handling arrangements, 401 W. Woodard St., Denison, (903) 465-2323.
Donations in Bill’s memory may be made to Waples United Methodist Church.
- William Lafayette Ashburn Jr., Father
- Blanch Church, Mother
- Yvonne Ashburn, Wife
- William (Bill) Lafayette & wife Julie Ashburn IV, Son
- Brian & wife Delinda Ashburn, Son
- Lee Ann Ashburn, Daughter
- Don & wife Priscilla Ashburn, Brother
- Earnie Ashburn, Grandchild
- Quint & wife Maggie Ashburn, Grandson
- John Brian Ashburn, Grandson
- Kristen & husband Patrick Krauss, Granddaughter
- Eric Ashburn, Grandson
- Peggy & husband R. L. Skaggs, Sister
- Lois & husband Harold Pace, Sister
Waples United Methodist Church
830 W. Main St., Denison, TX 75020
- Visitation Thursday, June 28, 2018
- Funeral Service Friday, June 29, 2018
William "Bill" Lafayette Ashburn III
July 1, 2018
I was the President-Elect, during Bill's term as President of the Denison
Rotary Club! What a gentleman, and such a pleasure to be around!
June 29, 2018
Mr. Ashburn was always a hoot to be around but he was also very generous. Not only did he allow me to spend a Thanksgiving in his home with his family one year but he also put a down payment (with no rush to pay him back) on an apartment for me in Texas so it didn't get snatched up while i was at work. Bill was always a calming presence and though i have not seen him for many years he will be missed.
June 28, 2018
Bill Ashburn was a devoted member of the first class of trained Stephen Ministers at Waples Methodist.
He loyally and consistently ministered to those with needs in a quiet and Christ-like manner. He was an inspiration to many.
He blessed us all.
Linda Sullivan, Stephen Ministry Leader