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Gwinn, Estella

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September 17, 1924 - April 17, 2018

Gwinn, Estella

Estella Jane Gwinn passed away peacefully in her sleep on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 at the age of 93.

Estella was born in Knoxville, Tennessee on September 17, 1924 to Charles and Ella Lee Bradshaw. She grew up in the Knoxville area where her family farmed and her maternal grandparents owned a grocery and general store. She attended Rule High School in Knoxville where she played clarinet in the Golden Bears marching band (although she claimed to be better at marching than playing).  She also met her future husband Lawrence Gwinn in high school where he played the sousaphone in the band.

Shortly after Pearl Harbor, Estella eloped with Lawrence and they married in Rossville, Georgia on Feb. 8, 1942. Lawrence joined the US Navy and the young couple moved to the Naval Air Station in Kingsville, Texas where Lawrence served as an aviation machinist mate working on PBY Catalina flying patrol boats. After WWII, they moved back to Knoxville.

Estella and Lawrence had three sons: Lawrence Jr., Kenneth, and Ronald. In 1960, Estella and Lawrence moved to Dallas and lived in Oak Cliff.  For many years, Estella assisted her mother Ella and her sister Avis in managing a women’s fashion outlet in Dallas for Sunny Isles, Inc. Lawrence passed away in 1991 after 49 years of marriage and Estella moved to the Lake Highlands area in 1998.

Estella loved working with children and youth, and she taught Sunday School at five Baptist churches in Knoxville and Dallas; most recently at Northlake Baptist in Lake Highlands.

She is survived by her son Larry and wife Carole of Cedar Hill, Texas; son Ron and wife Jackie of Dallas; daughter-in-law Donna of Waxahachie, Texas; seven grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.  She was preceded in death by her husband Lawrence, son Kenneth and her siblings Avis Overton Micots, John Lee Bradshaw and Rosalind Poe Tarwater.

The family wishes to express our heartfelt thanks to the management and staff of Brookdale White Rock who provided loving care to Estella over the past year.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you consider making a donation in Estella’s name to the Dementia Society of America or the Alzheimer’s Association.

A Signature Service under the direction of:
Aria Cremation Service & Funeral Home
10116 E. Northwest Highway
Dallas, Texas 75238


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May 05, 2018 9:10AM

Mike and I send our love. We are never ready to say goodbye to our loved ones. We hope your family and friends will surround you and help you through this difficult time.