Mrs. Elizabeth M. Stebbins Gibbs, 86 years old, of Arden, NC
Date of birth: July 9, 1926; Date of death August 25, 2012
Mrs. Elizabeth (Betty) Stebbins Gibbs passed into the presence of her Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, at The Oaks of Sweeten Creek Nursing Home in Arden, NC.
Elizabeth (Betty) Gibbs was born on July 9, 1926 in Saigon, Vietnam (formerly French Indo China) to missionary parents, Rev and Mrs. Irving (Mary) Stebbins. In 1932, at age six, Betty entered a children's boarding school at Dalat, Vietnam, where she spent nine months separated from her family, spending only three months each year with them at home for vacation.
In 1942, when World War II was imminent, the Stebbins were the first missionary family to be returned to the US because of concern for the safety of their seven children. Betty attended high school in Nyack, NY until the family moved to El Cerrito, CA, where her father worked as a language translator at the Office of War Information in San Francisco.
Following her El Cerrito High School graduation in 1945, Betty was employed at an office in the California shipyards until entering The Nyack Missionary Training Institute in Nyack, NY, where she met her (late) husband, Floyd Gibbs, from Knox, NY. They dated several years before marrying on June 1, 1948.
The Gibbs pastored a church for two years in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada and then went to begin their missionary service in the Philippine Islands, serving in Jolo, Zamboanga City, and Manila. During their years in Jolo, Betty translated the book of John into the Tausug language so that the people there could have a portion of the Bible in their own language. When they moved to Zamboanga, Betty ran the Guest Home for Missionaries in Zamboanga City and later in Manila, a home where missionaries and guests could stay and be refreshed and encouraged.
After their years in the Philippines, Floyd and Betty returned to Knox to care for Floyd's parents. While living in upstate New York, Betty ministered with her husband in several area churches, including Pineview Community Church, Westerlo Baptist Church, Altamont Christian Missionary Alliance, and South Westerlo Congregational Church. The Gibbs retired to Bradenton Missionary Village in 1995, residing there for ten years, before moving to The Oaks at Sweeten Creek in Arden, NC, to be closer to their youngest son, Irving, and his family.
Betty Gibbs is survived by their three children, Esther Gibbs Brisson of Canton, GA, Philip Gibbs of Ballston Lake, NY, Irving Gibbs of Mills River, NC, and their spouses, their nine grandchildren and a great granddaughter. One grandson, Joshua, died in 1989 at the age of 3 1/2. Betty was predeceased by four siblings, Harriet, Ruth, Bob and George. She has two surviving siblings, Anne and Tom.
The wake and funeral service will be held at Fredendall Funeral Home in Altamont, NY, on Saturday, September 1, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. with the service following at 12:00pm. Interment at Knox Cemetery, Knox NY.