Sophia Gilbert of Danville, KY passed away peacefully on November 17, 2020 at Ephraim McDowell Hospital. In just a few weeks she would have been 95 years old. She was the wife of BJ Gilbert who died in 2013. She was the daughter of Bradley and Amanda Boggs Johnson and was born in the Moores Creek community of Jackson County, KY on December 9, 1925. She and her family moved to the Danville community in 1966.
She had three brothers, Clyde, Ray and Roy Johnson and four sisters, Grace Bowling, Rena Metcalf, Rhoda Moore and Ruba Johnson who are all deceased. She is the last of her siblings and lived longer than any of them by about five years.
She lived through the Great Depression and World War II. During the war she took a job in the summer in Connersville, IN, where other family members lived and worked in a factory making airplanes for the war. Yes, she was a ‘Rosy the Riveter’. Near the end of the war she took a teaching job in a one-room school in the Drip Rock, KY area teaching all eight grades. She taught only one year and could have continued teaching but, instead, she returned to her Moores Creek community to marry the love of her life, BJ Gilbert. They were farmers and she worked alongside her husband in whatever job was needed. In 1966 they bought the Red Bud Farm on Spears Lane in Danville and farmed there until their health required them to retire from this intensive labor. For the last few years, she had struggled with Alzheimer’s Disease and resided, first at McDowell Place and, later, at Charleston Center. We are grateful to all the medical staff and caregivers for their loving care. She was a charter member of Bluegrass Pike Baptist Church in Danville and devoted her life to taking care of her family and serving God. We will miss her greatly.
She leaves behind four children: Imogene (Larry) Brown of Charlotte, NC; Gary (Marlene) Gilbert and Sondra (Eddie) Townsend both of Danville and Bennie (Terry) Gilbert of Harrodsburg, KY. She is also survived by 8 grandchildren: Rodney (Julie) Brown of Charlotte, NC; Michelle Gilbert of Lexington, Timothy (Misty) Gilbert of Charleston, IL; Brad (Jessica) Wilkerson of Bryantsville, Cyndi (Chris) Wrenn, Beth Belden, Jennifer (Robb) Newby and Joey (Michelle) Gilbert all of Danville. There are 16 great grandchildren who survive her. She is also survived by several nieces and nephews as well as four sisters-in-law and three brothers-in-law.
Due to the pandemic there will be no public calling and a graveside service will be conducted at the convenience of the family with Rev Travis Alltop and grandson Rev Tim Gilbert officiating. She will be laid to rest beside her husband of 67 years at Danville Memorial Gardens. Donations in memory of her may be made to: Alzheimer’s Association of Greater KY and Southern IN, 6100 Dutchman’s Lane Suite 401, Louisville, KY 40205
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