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Page County Democrat
Clarinda, Iowa
May 30, 1916

Came From His Home At Hepburn
To Spend The Day At The Killingsworth HOME

Had Intended to Return Home That Night --
On Account of His Condition The Doctor Insisted He Remain The Night.

The Reverend J. R. (sic) GIBSON, pastor of the United Presbyterian church at Hepburn [Iowa], honored and respected by a host of friends and acquaintances passed from this earthly home to the final reward of all God-loving, God-fearing men, on Saturday morning, at 7:30 o'clock.

Death came very suddenly to Rev. GIBSON. He, with his wife, had motored down Friday morning to spend the day at the home of Dr. KILLINGSWORTH. The two men had had a very good visit during the day, but Rev. GIBSON complained to the doctor that he was not feeling the very best and mentioned that during the trip in the car he felt several times like he could not stand the speed the car was traveling, but did not want to complain for fear that his wife would think his condition was more serious than it was and he did not want to frighten her. As the afternoon drew on the Reverend told the Doctor that he guessed would go back that night, but Dr. KILLINGSWORTH told him he had better remain, and just as a matter of form he reached and felt the pulse of Rev. GIBSON and was surprised to find that it was very low, and then he insisted that the Reverend spend the night with them as he was in no condition to make the trip; this he finally agreed to do. The Doctor and himself sat on the veranda in the evening, and had a very sociable time, and the Reverend retired feeling very much better. In the morning he was not feeling well and his wife arose and told him to remain in bed and she would have the doctor come up and see him, but before the doctor could arrive he had given a gasp and when the doctor arrived he found that life was extinct.

The remains were removed to the Harmon Funeral Home, and services will be held in the United Presbyterian church at Hepburn, where he has been pastor for the past two years. Rev. W. C. WILLIAMSON, officiating, he having made the trip from Cleveland, Ohio, where he was attending the general conference of the United Presbyterian church. Interment will be made in the family lot at Tarkio, Mo.

James Patterson GIBSON was born August 10th, 1849, at Glenhope Mills, six miles from Oxford, Chester county, Irish ancestry and at least two of his forebears served in the Revolutionary war. His father died when Patterson was twelve years of age and shortly afterward his mother, with her family of four boys and one girl, removed to New Wilmington, Pennsylvania, where the boys attended college and where the deceased was graduated in 1871.

That year he entered Allegheny Theological Seminary where he graduated in 1874 after having been in Xenia Theological Seminary during the winter of 1872-3. Mr. GIBSON was licensed to preach in 1873 by Monongahela Presbytery and preached during that summer vacation at the congregation of Troy and Southfield, Oakland county, Michigan. Upon graduation he was called to the pastorate of these congregations and thither he went immediately after his marriage to Miss Annetta FLEMMING on April 8th, 1874. After serving these charges for ten years, Mr. GIBSON, at the request of Presbytery, removed to Bad Axe, Huron county, Michigan, to do much needed home missionary work in that vicinity which a short time before had been devastated by forest fires.

Following this work he held successive pastorates at De Witt, Iowa, Chetopa, Kas., Tingley, Iowa [1890-1895], and Alexis, Ill., and in 1897 was appointed Financial Agent of Tarkio College at Tarkio, Mo., in which work he was engaged for five years.MO

Mrs. GIBSON died at Tarkio in 1902 and shortly afterward Rev. GIBSON was called to serve the newley (sic) organized congregation at Fort Morgan, Colorado, where, during four years of most efficient work, the membership grew from about thirty to more than two hundred. After leaving the work in this congregation he was assigned to home missionary work at Valley, Colorado, where he built up a thriving congregation, which he was obliged to give up on account of failing health. Some years were then devoted to his farm near Fort Morgan, but at this he was not content, and disregarding his physical weakness, he responded to the call of his heart and took up the pastorate work at Hepburn, Iowa, in January 1914. In this field he had perhaps his most decided success; the small congregation took new heart under his ministry; the membership has almost doubled, and in recent months a fine new church has been built which was dedicated May 7, 1916, practically free of debt. This may well be considered the crowning effort of Rev. GIBSON'S life and we know that he was thoroughly ready for the sudden call of death which came to him May 26, 1916, at Clarinda Hospital, where he had gone for a few day's rest.

The deceased is survived by Margaret McCOOL GIBSON, wife; Rev J. H. GIBSON, pastor of Wheatland, Illinois, a brother; Mrs. Rev. J. H. BROWN, Monmouth, Illinois, a sister; W. J. GIBSON, Esq. of New York city, a brother; and his five children, namely Mrs. C. F. H. (Mabel) MILLS of Lincoln, Nebr., Mrs. A. L. (Bessie) MARTIN, Mrs. R. M. (Roberta) WORK and Miss Emma (Emily) GIBSON, all of Fort Morgan, Colorado, and James P. GIBSON Jr., of Los Angeles, California, and besides these is mourned by a faithful and devoted congregation at Hepburn, and hosts of friends throughout the community and the church at large.

Transcription by Sharon R. Becker, May of 2011

To submit your Ringgold County obituaries, contact Sharon R. Becker at
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