Gladys Marie Marshall Babb was born on 5/14/1929 in Moody, TX. She passed away on 12/19/2022 in Monroe, LA. She was ninety-three years old.
Preceded in death by parents, Edgar and Mary Marshall; husband of 46 years, Billy Rayford Babb; daughter, Denise Ann Babb; and sister, Helen Middleton.
Survived by sons Bruce Babb, and wife Beverly, and Kevin Babb, and wife Carol. Also survived by grandchildren Brent Babb, and wife Mande, Nathan Babb, and Rachel Babb, as well as great grandchildren Ashtyn, Josiah, Isaiah, and Eisley Babb, and nieces Lindy Allen and Renee Pruett, and nephew Gary Middleton. Marie enjoyed being Grandma to her 3 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren.
Marie grew up in Killeen, TX, next to the Fort Hood Army Base. She attended Killeen High School, where she was a cheerleader and skillful tennis player. She graduated as salutatorian of the Class of 1946. After graduation, Marie moved for a job in Houston, where she met her future husband, Billy. They married on January 3, 1951 in his hometown of Poteau, OK while he was on leave during active duty during the Korean War. He was an Army drill instructor. After his discharge they returned to Houston. Bruce was born in August, 1952.
In 1953, Marie and Billy moved to Monroe, LA, so that Billy could establish a new branch of Thermal Supply, a wholesaler of heating and air conditioning equipment. Marie had a long career working for the local cable TV provider, eventually retiring from Time Warner.
They joined First Baptist Church in West Monroe. She was a Bible teacher for children on Sunday mornings and evenings, as well as in Summer Vacation Bible School. She was a prayer chain leader for many years in the Agape class.
Denise was born in 1953 and Kevin in 1957. Denise was born with severe cerebral palsy. Marie lovingly and heroically cared for her at home for several years. Due to her special needs, Denise was placed in a long term care facility where she passed away in 1958.
In 1963, Marie and Billy took on the challenge of caring for his older brother’s three daughters for an entire school year due to family difficulties. Marie carried most of the load for handling five elementary school age children in a three bedroom house. She also ministered individually to her nieces emotionally and spiritually in a difficult period in their lives.
Marie was an avid bowler. She and her close friends competed as the “Happy Five” team for an incredible 40 years, not only in weekly leagues but also in tournaments around the state. She was active in maintaining her home’s landscaping and home interior with beautiful flowers and plants. She enjoyed attending and holding garage sales, sewing and quilting, collecting thimbles, playing card games, assembling jigsaw puzzles, and listening to country music. She bought a piano in her seventies and learned to play a few songs. In her eighties she learned how to use a laptop computer and avidly read her grandson Nathan’s travel blogs. In retirement, she volunteered for 12 years for Christian Community Ministries, a clothing-focused charity.
Marie and Billy were married for 46 years. She cared for Billy on a daily basis during his bout with cancer in winter and spring of 1997.
A few years later Marie met JW Hackworth, a widower. They developed a loving relationship as friends and companions. Through his involvement with Post 180 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, she joined the VFW Auxiliary, serving several years as chapter treasurer and president. Marie and JW attended weekly Friday dance nights at the VFW hall, and usually were the ticket takers. They made many friends via these activities.
Marie was blessed with a long and active life…. always ready to have fun. Throughout her life she was involved in helping others and serving their needs. Marie truly understood that it is important to be a “doer of the word, and not a hearer only.”
Bruce and Kevin express their appreciation for the staff at Elara Caring and to the four women -Ilene, Juanita, Ida, and Debra – that took care of Marie around the clock so she could be in her comfortable surroundings at home.
Kilpatrick Funeral Home, 1200 Lamy Lane, Monroe, LA
Woods Watson, First West, West Monroe, LA
Private interment will occur at a later date at Roselawn Memorial Gardens, Calhoun, LA
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