Pat Gilbert Willbanks, Sr.

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Pat Gilbert Willbanks, Sr.

January 01, 1948 - March 05, 2019

Pat Gilbert Willbanks, Sr. Patrick Gilbert Willbanks Sr. of Mabank, TX passed away March 5, 2019 in Tyler, TX.
Pat was born January 1, 1948 in Fort Worth, TX to Gilbert and Doris Willbanks. He grew up in Boyd, TX and graduated from Boyd High School in 1966. He served in the Navy as a Medic from 1966 to 1968. He was stationed in Yokosuka, Japan during the Vietnam War and received an honorable discharge.
He married Sheri Willbanks on February 12, 1972. Pat and Sheri recently celebrated 47 years of marriage with a trip to Memphis, TN to visit Graceland.
Pat celebrated becoming a father when his daughter, Kristi Willbanks, was born in 1973 and proudly added a son, Patrick Willbanks, Jr., to the family in 1976.
Pat was an entrepreneur, working for himself and creating several businesses throughout his career. He and his brother, Randy Willbanks, opened and managed Willbanks Grocery & Market for a few years; Pat opened and managed a used car lot and towing service; and he ran a junkyard for several years. Pat and Sheri were long haul truck drivers for 14 years until Pat's retirement in 2013.
Pat was excited to become a grandfather, affectionately known as "PaPa Claus" because of his long, bushy, white beard and rosy cheeks. He enjoyed spending time with his three grandkids, Paton, Reid and Elizabeth - teaching them how to fish and how to play poker, and cheering them on at their many sporting events.
In his retirement, Pat enjoyed traveling, recently achieving a life long dream of visiting Alaska. He started a large garden on 2 1/2 acres of land and created his own well-digging machine to dig a well for his garden.
Pat is preceded in death by his parents Gib and Doris Willbanks and brother Randy Willbanks.
He is survived by his loving wife Sheri Willbanks, daughter Kristi Willbanks and husband Rorry Phillips, son Patrick Willbanks & wife Jodi, three grandchildren Paton Willbanks, Reid Phillips, Elizabeth Phillips, sisters Beverly Lowe, Deb Willbanks-Neff, many nieces, nephews, and "adopted" loved ones.
In lieu of flowers the family would like donations to be made to Hope Sprigs Water, Athens, TX at www.hopespringswater.org and Alzheimer's Association at www.alz.org.
Published on March 8, 2019
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