Long time Waterford resident Virginia Gibson passed away peacefully on March 17 after her long struggle with Alzheimer’s disease. Virginia was born at home on Horseshoe Road in Knights Ferry, CA to James and Lolie (Moni) Bianchi. Growing up in Knights Ferry she attended Knights Ferry Elementary School and Oakdale High School where she graduated in 1948. In 1953, Virginia married Herbert L. Gibson and moved to his ranch east of Waterford where she and Herb lived, worked and raised their three children until Herb’s death in 1974. Later, Virginia began dating Walt Taylor of Knights Ferry and he remained her loving companion until his death in 2009. Virginia enjoyed her country home and was able to remain on her ranch until 2012.
Virginia wore many hats during her life. She was a wife, mother, ranch/cattle woman and also worked outside of the home as an instructional aide at Waterford School until her retirement. She was active in her children’s school activities and was a member of the Waterford Tri-W Club, Soroptimist, Rebekahs and Red Hat Society. She, Herb and Walt were all active in the Knights Ferry Odd Fellows Lodge and some will remember how Virginia ran a tight ship when seating patrons at the lodge’s monthly breakfast. Virginia enjoyed volunteering at Old Oak Ranch, playing cards and loved to dance. Mom didn’t turn down too many invitations to socialize. Virginia was preceded in death by her parents, James and Lolie Bianchi; husband, Herb Gibson; companion, Walt Taylor; and brothers, Bill and Ed Bianchi.
She is survived by her children, David (Debbie) Gibson of Waterford; Ken (Evelyn) Gibson of Turlock; and Susie (David) Souza of Waterford; her grandchildren, Wendy Gibson, Herb (Rhonda) Gibson, Jodi Souza, Lyndi Simmons, Kendell (Travis) Struiksma and her great-grandchildren, Zoie, Ian, Kyle, Giana, Jalia, Brek, Case and baby Struiksma on its way. She also leaves Pat Taylor of Oakdale; Sean Dunagan of Oregon; the extended Walt Taylor family and sisters-in-law, Bonnie Bianchi of Oakdale; Sandy (Bob) Green of Fulton, NY; and Virginia Bianchi of Stockton.
A Celebration of Life will be held on March 31 at 1:30 p.m. at Oakdale Memorial Chapel, 830 West F St., Oakdale, CA. A private burial will be held by her family at a later date. In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be sent to the Alzheimer’s Aid Society, P O Box 60095, Sacramento, CA 95860 in her name or to a favorite charity. Virginia’s family would like to extend a sincere and heart-felt thank you to the staff at Pacifica Senior Living in Modesto and to her fellow residents and their families who cared for, befriended and supported mom, and us, during her stay.
The Oakdale (Calif.) Leader
March 23, 2016