Obituary of Bev Dismukes Walker
On May 2, 1938, William and Myrtle Gipson welcomed their daughter, Beverly Ann, into this world. She was born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Shortly after her birth, her parents moved to Santa Barbara, California where her sister Sandra Kay was born. Later the family moved to Sacramento, California.
Beverly, better known as Bev, attended Lincoln Elementary School. She loved school and made her parents proud by learning her ABC's & earning good grades at a very early age. She became friends with Evelyn Austin in the 3rd grade, and they remained friends from their childhood up until Bev passing.
Bev attended Stanford Middle School where she excelled at playing the Cello. She played so well that she became a member of the C.K. McClatchy High School band and drill team. She also enjoyed participating in other high school activities up until graduation in 1956. Bev met Rudolph Dismukes in high school. The couple got married after graduation and their first son, Gordon Glen was born in 1958. Shortly thereafter, Rudolph enlisted in the U.S. Army and the family moved to Guam. They moved back to Sacramento when his assignment ended and their second son, Stefan Yves, was born in1964.
Bev became a single parent and decided to attend Sacramento State where she graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Human Resources. She was recruited by IBM in San Jose, California. It was a hard decision to leave her family and friends, but she courageously chose to relocate with her two sons.
Being a single mom of two boys wasn't easy, but with the help of the Lord she did a great job. Gordon and Stefan were exposed to sports, fishing, horseback riding and lots of music. Bev made it a point to return to Sacramento every Thanksgiving & Christmas to celebrate with her family. Bev was excited about her new career at IBM. Having inherited the love of being social from her beloved parents, she enjoyed meeting new people and building new friendships. She immediately fell in love with her newfound community in San Jose. Bev and Margaret Williams were hired by IBM at the same time. Both were new to the area and single parents. Margaret had 3 daughters, Marlea, Tina and Tammy. They began a beautiful friendship that lasted 54 years. Bev established so many special friendships within her IBM family and community. I can't name them all but here are a few: Glenda Heldris, Milt & Sherrie Winfrey, Dani Anderson, Gerri Hobson, Dee Jules, Hank Gibson, MaryAnn Carr and Frances Jones. Bev enjoyed playing softball in the IBM league and was involved in bowling leagues within her social circle. She often joked her second career was hanging out with the gang at the Safari Room!
In 1970, Bev and her two sons joined church at Emmanuel Baptist Church in San Jose under the leadership of Reverend Willie L Gaines. Bev met the love of her life, Prather Walker, Jr. in 1988. The two were married on a yacht in the San Francisco Bay on August 26, 1989. Their marriage was filled with much love, laughter, dancing, and exciting travel destinations around the world. They enjoyed throwing parties for family and friends. They also purchased a motor home and became members of the Rod and Wheelers Club. They did a lot of traveling.
After Prater passed away in 2005, Bev moved back to Sacramento, and assisted her niece Lynne and the family in caring for her parents. Bev was able re-engaged with her old friends, such as Carol Curtis and made some new friends too. Bev was an active member of the Red Hat Society ''Queens of the Nile''. The Red Hat Society is a worldwide society that encourages women in their quest to get the most out of life. The group supports women in the pursuit of fun, friendship, freedom, fitness and the fulfillment of lifelong dreams. She was an active member in Grown Women of Northern California; Grown Women is a gathering of women who have created an environment of loving support, where they experience respect, growth, peace of mind and empowerment through fellowship, creative self-expressions, joy filled play and soulful self-reflections. The gatherings are held quarterly providing no drama, no mess, no fuss, fun environment for women of all ages to come together to forge a bond of friendship, sisterhood and love.
Bev was also a member of Project Group, members participated in modern day quilting sessions with a twist. Project members met in each other's homes, eating good food, having fun conversations, working on crafts, sewing, art, etc. Bev joined Antioch Progressive Baptist Church in 2005, under the leadership of Sr. Pastor, Dr. Curtis J. Mitchell. Bev was a dedicated member of the Bible study and fellowship Tribe of Judah. She was blessed to be one of the first members to meet Dwight and Sharon Jenkins. There was an instant friendship developed. Bev, in her Bev fashion, made the couple feel immediately welcomed when they visited Antioch church for the first time, as the couple was actually searching for a church home. She was blessed to later see her friend Dwight Jenkins become current Pastor of Antioch Progressive Baptist Church. After a short illness, Bev passed away on September 21, 2023 with her son Stefan by her side.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Myrtle and William (Bo) Gipson; her son Gordon; her sister Sandi and her son and daughter Robert and Reiko; her husband Prather Walker and his daughters Phyllis and Angel; and nephew Sgt. Derrick Butler.
Bev is survived by her son Stefan and his wife Brett, nieces Lynne Lewis, Erica, and nephew Robby Lewis; niece and nephew Monica Butler and Kirk Butler; great-nieces and nephews Elton, Elijah, Jaliya, Tony, Brandon, Chanel; her very close cousins Fred, Daisy Jenkins and Howard Thomas. Also, her husband Prather's niece Yvonne and her daughter Lisa, grandchildren Crystal, Georgette, David, Nicole, Jonathan; and great-grandchildren Gloria, Huwan, and Christian.
Bev shall be greatly missed by many. However, the memories of her beautiful smile, her joyful love and friendship shall live on in our hearts forever.
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