Helen Ann Gamblin Whitmire was carried by angels into the glorious presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at 1:45pm on Saturday, October 31, 2020. Visitation will be Thursday, November 5, 2020 at Hamil Family Funeral Home from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. A celebration of Helen's life will take place on Friday, November 6, 2020 at 12:00 Noon at Elmwood Memorial Park Cemetery.
Helen Ann Gamblin was born to Billy Ray and Thelma Gamblin on January 21, 1942 in Lubbock, Texas. She graduated from Abilene High School in 1960 and then from Texas Christian University with a degree in Elementary Education in 1964. She married her soul mate and lifelong companion, David Whitmire on August 17, 1963. Helen was a faithful follower of Jesus Christ and lived serving God, nurturing her family and loving her community. Helen and David were members of Pioneer Drive Baptist Church in Abilene, Texas and Crestview Baptist Church in Georgetown, Texas.
Helen worked inside and out of her home. She taught first grade in Wichita Falls, Texas and second grade in Lubbock, Texas. She also worked at NCR Corporation and Bass and Hobbs Law Firm. Helen was a devoted supporter of her husband's ministry and worked as secretary in many churches where David was pastor. Professionally, Helen held a special place in her heart for her years of service at East Texas Baptist University where she served in the Library, secretary for the Religion Department, Registrar and Business offices. Outside of her work on campus, Helen was passionate about assisting any student in need with food, shelter, love and guidance.
Helen was a community advocate and volunteer throughout her life and continued to care for others until her death. As a skilled knitter, Helen found a personal ministry in knitting blankets that were donated to hospitals for newborn babies, residents in nursing homes, those who were homebound and patients with ALS. Helen spent six years sharing her warmth and kindness with the underserved in Abilene by volunteering at the Presbyterian Medical Care Mission. Working with the PMCM brought Helen much joy and she added tremendous value to their team by warming the hearts and spirits of all who entered.
After David's retirement, Helen and David toured the world on riverboats and cruise lines with family and friends. They also toured the United States in their RV and made many new friends along the way.
Helen started showing symptoms of ALS in 2016 and was diagnosed with ALS January 15, 2019. She was never one to complain and continued her life as she wanted with her family by her side.
Helen is survived by her husband, David E. Whitmire; Four children: Stephen Whitmire and his wife, Naomi of Marshall, Texas, Keri Bradley her husband, John of Longview, Texas, Sarah Puckett and her husband, James of Cypress, Texas and Nathan Whitmire and his wife, Catherine of Arlington, Texas; nine grandchildren and six great grandchildren. She is also survived by her sister, Brenda Bredemeyer of Abilene, Texas, her brother, Dr. Ken Gamblin and his wife Kathleen of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and many nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Presbyterian Medical Care Mission, 1857 Pine Street, Ste 100, Abilene, Texas 79601
The family would like to thank the ALS Organization of Texas, Dr. Horvit's office and staff and Traditions Health Hospice for their assistance and care during this difficult time.