With his wife of 66 years holding his hand, Leonard E. “Gene” E. Stokes passed from this world into the arms of Jesus on November 19, 2020.
Gene was born in Wauchula, Florida on August 11, 1932 and spent his early years in Thomasville, Georgia. When the family moved to Tampa, he attended Hillsborough High School. Following graduation, he served a tour of duty in Korea with the First Marine Division. Gene graduated from the University of Tampa before entering a career in the insurance industry.
Gene and his family lived in several states before returning to Florida and making their home in Winter Haven. Gene became a partner in a local agency, and they remained in that location for 27 years. During that time, he was a deacon at Calvary Baptist church as well a 25-year Rotarian. Following retirement, they moved to Lakeland and he spent those years in service to others. Gene became a Presbyterian elder and volunteered at Catholic Charities, Department of Elderly Affairs, and Volunteers in Medicine. He was always willing to assist a neighbor with yard care and was constantly alert for a weed that needed pulling or a shrub that needed trimming. He attended Cornerstone Baptist Church where he loved to join in the singing.
Gene is preceded in death by his daughter, Patti Jean, and sister Shirley. He is survived by his wife Patricia, son Lee (Lola), daughter Karen (John), 5 grandchildren, and 1 great grandchild.
Family services will be held at Florida National Cemetery 6502 SW 102nd Ave. Bushnell, FL 33513.
His life exemplified his faith, earning him the accolade, “Well done, thy good and faithful servant.” Condolences may be sent to the family at Gentry-Morrison Funeral Homes.