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Obituary for Dr. James Chester Gibson

Dr. James Chester Gibson, age 75, entered into the presence of the Lord on Saturday, April 22, 2017, at Tanner Medical Center in Carrollton, GA. He was surrounded by loving family and friends. Chester was born on August 17, 1941 in Paulding County, GA, to Carl Lee and Lizzie Bell Gibson. From a very young age Chester began to appreciate the written word and read books by the dozen. His family moved from their country farm to busy Cobb County where Chester attended and graduated from Sprayberry High School. After graduation he enrolled at Reinhardt Junior College in Waleska, GA. Here he discovered his passion for debate and scholastic achievement. After two years at Reinhardt, Chester continued his college career at the University of Georgia. Here he completed his bachelors, masters, and doctorate degree. While working on his graduate degrees, Chester was selected to be the assistant debate coach, which was fueled by his love for debate he had discovered as an undergraduate. In 1964, he was hired as history teacher and literary advisor/coach for Commerce High School. He introduced debate … leading teams to state championships and his teams were invited to the National Championship in Albuquerque, New Mexico. It was while teaching at Commerce High School that he met the love of his life, Faye Thompson. Chester and Faye were married on December 19, 1965. Upon the completion of Chester’s graduate degrees, they moved to Carrollton where Chester came to teach at West Georgia College. Over the years, under his leadership, the debating team gained national attention as one of the most recognized competitors on the entire national debate circuit. Dr. Gibson was named Chairman of the Department of Mass Communications and Theater, and he remained in that position until he retired in December of 2000. He received many academic awards and special recognitions both locally and nationally throughout the years of his career. His life work as a speech educator and interscholastic debater and debate coach has been recognized as monumental. Outside his academic life were his cherished family and relationships. He was the most devoted and loving husband, daddy, papa, and friend. Rocky Mount Baptist fellowship was blessed immensely by his leadership, guidance, and love for God and the people of God. He was active in ministry and was probably best known for his roles as children’s church and adult Sunday school teacher. He will be sorely missed. He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Bennie Gibson, and his sister, Ritha Gayle. His survivors include his wife, Faye, of 51 years and his son, Chris Gibson (Kimberly), his daughter, Shelley Jennings (Robert), and seven grandchildren, Christopher and Jackson Gibson, Caroline, Camille, Claire, Charlotte and Coleman Jennings. Also remaining are four sisters, Dorothy Conner (Frank), Christine Gillespie (Bill), Patricia Deavers, and Shirley Palmer (Larry), and numerous nieces and nephews who all loved him very much.
A celebration of life will be conducted at Rocky Mount Baptist Church on Tuesday, April 25th, at 11 a.m. Officiating will be Rev. Steve Riddle, Rev. Tommy Greer, .and Rev. Jerry Little. Serving as pallbearers will be his grandsons, Christopher and Jackson Gibson, his nephew, Phillip Rollins, friends Dale Driver and David Bramble, and the current director of debate at the University West Georgia, Dr. Michael Hester. And, honorary pallbearers will be Philip and Gayle Denney, Jud and Nancy Hall, Terry and Marcia Harper, and Lewis and Gloria North.
Interment will be at Carroll Memorial Gardens. Visitation with the family will be on Monday, April 24th, at 12 noon – 2 p.m., and again at 5 p.m. - 7 p.m. at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made, in honor of Dr. Chester Gibson, to Rocky Mount Baptist Church, at 583 Buffalo Creek Road, Carrollton, Georgia 30117. Messages of condolence may be sent to the family at www.martin-hightower.com. Martin & Hightower Heritage Chapel has charge of the arrangements.


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Previous Events

Visitation

Monday

24

Apr

12:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Martin & Hightower Funeral Home

1312 South Park Street
Carrollton, GA 30117

Visitation

Monday

24

Apr

5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Martin & Hightower Funeral Home

1312 South Park Street
Carrollton, GA 30117

Service

Tuesday

25

Apr

11:00 AM
Rocky Mount Baptist Church

583 Buffalo Creek Road
Carrollton, GA 30117

Cemetery Details

Location

Carroll Memory Gardens

914 Stripling Chapel Rd
Carrollton, GA 30116

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