Barbara (Coote) Thigpen, age 85, passed away Monday, December 19, 2018. She was born in Ontario, Canada on March 24, 1933 to Elmore & Margaret Coote, who migrated to Florida in the early 1950s. She and her parents became Naturalized US citizens a few years later.
Barbara worked in her father’s grocery stores for several years, then in the Sears auditing department. She was married in 1952 to Stuart Bonds and had her only child, Kathy (Bonds) McDaniels in January 1953. She was an active member of First Baptist Church/Orlando, and for many years managed the church library. She was a very hard-working single parent, but had parents’ support in raising Kathy. She remarried in the late 60s to Ken Thigpen after meeting while working with the youth at FBC/O. She eventually retired from Sears and then did the bookkeeping for her husband’s structural engineering firm for many years. She and Ken loved to travel and made many trips together to Canada, Hawaii, Alaska, many locations in Europe, Central America, and Asia.
In 1971, she became a grandma for the first time when Claudia was born and again ten years later when Meredith arrived. In 1990, her first great-grandchild, Lane, was born. Over the next 23 years, she would welcome 7 more, giving her a total of 8 great-grandchildren… Lane, Bailey, John, Olivia, Morgan, Mackenzie, Kendall, and Ace.
Barbara loved her family and supported them in every possible way - went to many of ballgames. She loved to laugh and share jokes and funny emails. She embraced technology, computers, and the internet (particularly online shopping!) She also loved to do crossword puzzles and play games with the family - Rummikub in particular. She loved sewing and needlework - particularly counted cross stitch. She enjoyed eating out and became a regular at the Denny’s by the airport. She had a phenomenal memory for dates, names, and events and was a great listener.
She was a kind, compassionate woman, who loved her church, and was a faithful servant and friend. She will be sorely missed by her family and many friends.
A Memorial Service will be held at Newcomer Funeral Home - East Orlando Chapel, 895 S. Goldenrod Rd, Orlando, FL 32822 with Brother Jim Henry officiating.
The family will receive friends at the funeral home between 3:00 and 4:00 pm.
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