Johnnie B. McGilvray passed from this life on Thursday, December 28, 2017. She was born November 17, 1928 in Eastland County to Nick and Lorean Duggan. One of 10 children, she spent her childhood helping with all the chores of a sharecropping family. One of her favorite memories of childhood was of her mother reading aloud as she churned butter. That love of reading resulted in Johnnie being promoted to a higher-grade level twice in the little one-room school that she attended.
After graduating from high school, Johnnie moved to Wichita Falls, Texas where she found work as a telephone operator. After marriage, she spent her time as a homemaker. She lost her first child, Sandy, when Sandy was two months old. Afterward, she had four more children, Cristy, Steve, Kathy, and Jan.
Johnnie married James McGilvray on March 16, 1956 and they spent time in Greenville, Garland, Lewisville, and Granbury, Texas. Her farming skills were put to good use, as she helped James with gardening. She also continued to enjoy learning, even though she never went to college. She pursued community classes on subjects like photography, flower arranging, and ceramics. When one of her children needed braces, she went to work at Collins Radio and found she loved soldering the small radio circuits together, similar to putting together a jigsaw puzzle. Later in life, she would work for Texas Instruments as an engineering assistant.
Never one to sit idle, Johnnie enjoyed knitting, crocheting, sewing, and canning produce from the garden. Her competitive nature came out when she pursued bowling, playing bridge, and even learning to golf after her retirement. Her leadership skills were evidenced from her participation in PTA, Garland Girls Softball Association, and the Ladies Golf Association at De Cordova Bend. She was a lifelong teacher of Bible classes at the local churches of Christ that she joined in each of the cities in which she lived.
Her family will sorely miss her. Johnnie was always trying to organize family reunions, and she enjoyed cooking large meals when her children's families would gather at her home to celebrate a holiday. God blessed her greatly in life, and she was always quick to give Him the glory. Her family learned from her generous nature.
Johnnie was preceded in death by her husband, James McGilvray, and her daughter Sandy. She is survived by her children: Cristy Combest and husband Travis, Steve Parker, Kathy and her husband Andy Parker, Jan and her husband Billy Harrington; and two siblings, Nickie Duggan and Mary Vincent. She has 18 grandchildren and 25 great-grandchildren. Her memorial service will be held at Brown’s Memorial Funeral Home on Wednesday, January 3, 2018 at 10:00 a.m.