Wales passed away Tuesday, May 7, 2013 at her residence after a long and courageous battle with breast cancer. Jean was born upstairs at Dr. B.L. Livengood's Clinic at 2144 Ave. F in Bay City on March 21, 1935 to parents Walter William Jr. and Marjorie Jim Bruce Wilkinson. She was a 7th generation of the earliest pioneers of Matagorda County. Her maternal grandparents were the late James Arthur and Larena Mae Nolte Bruce, both natives of Matagorda. An interesting note was that Jean was a 52nd birthday gift to her grandmother Bruce. Her paternal grandparents were the late Walter William and Helen Lanssa Gossett Wilkinson, both natives of Belmont County, Ohio. The first 16 months of Jean's life were spent in Collegeport. She was the last of the Wilkinson Family to live there. She and her parents moved to Bay City in July of 1936 where she lived the rest of her life.
Mrs. Wales was educated in the Bay City schools and attended Sullins College in Bristol, Virginia and the University of Texas in 1949. She was one of the first Girl Scouts in Bay City to earn the coveted Curved Bar, the equivalent of the Eagle Scout of the Boy Scouts.
Mr. and Mrs. Wales met through Lionism. She had the distinction of being married to two Past District Governors of Lions District 2S4. They were supporters of the Texas Lions Camp in Kerrville, Texas and their home contains many mementos of their travels to Portugal, Spain, The Rock of Gibraltar, England, France, Italy, Greece, the Greek Islands, Crete, and Egypt.
Jean was a Charter Member of the Mary Ralph Marsh Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, and a Charter and Life Member of the Matagorda County Genealogical Society. She was a Life Member of the Roger Williams Family Association of Providence, Rhode Island, the Belmont County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society, and the Texas Lions Camp for Children in Kerrville, Texas. She was also a member of the James W. Fannin Chapter of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas where she served 8 years on the DRT Cradle Committee in Galveston. She was a member of the American Legion Auxiliary Unit 11, the Matagorda County Museum, the Victoria Preservation Inc., and the Refugio County Museum.
Her grandson, Joseph Walter Chapman, a son in law, David Chapman, her husband, Dr. Gordon Eugene Richardson, and her parents, Walter and Marjorie Wilkinson and her grandparents, preceded Jean in death.
Her survivors include her husband, Bill Bartlett Wales of Bay City, daughter, Virginia Chapman of Wimberley, grandson, Mason Allen Kapp of Wimberley, stepdaughter and husband Jeanne and Jimmie Naiser of League City, and stepdaughter, Charissa Lynn Wales of Montgomery, stepsons, William Bartlett Wales, and James Steven Wales both of Refugio. Step granddaughters, Dr. Shelley Hancock and husband John of San Antonio, and Jayme Leigh Naiser and fiancé Ryan Petersen of Pearland also survive her.
A time of Visitation with the family will be held on Thursday, May 9, from 5:00 PM until 8:00 PM at the Bay City Funeral Home. Funeral Services will be held at 10:00 AM on Friday May 10, 2013 at the St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Bay City (of which she was a life member) with Rev. Brad Sullivan and Rev. Susan Kennard officiating. Interment will follow at the Wilkinson family plot in Hawley Cemetery near Blessing, Texas.
Courtney Perry Glover, III, James Bruce Grover, Edward Eugene Scott, John Paul Wilkinson, Jr., Jimmy David Cashion, and David Lloyd Deerman will serve as pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers will be Monte Marshall, Jimmie Naiser, Ray Rangel and Frank Stegall.
The family requests that memorials be made to "The Cradle" P.O. Box 3268, Galveston, Texas, St Mark's Episcopal Church, 2200 Ave. E, Bay City, Texas, 77414, or to the
Services are under the direction of BAY CITY FUNERAL HOME. 2205 AVE K. BAY CITY, TEXAS 77414
Published in Houston Chronicle on May 9, 2013