Jackie Lasley Milling Gonzalez died on Friday, January 15, 2021, from pneumonia complications. She left this life holding her sister’s hand while surrounded by her husband and loved ones, carrying the love of all who knew and cherished her.
Jackie was born January 9, 1942, and was preceded in death by her parents John Kerr Lasley and Helen Misenheimer Lasley. She is mourned by her sister, Frances Lasley Lanier, her best friend in this life and the life eternal, and her husband, Armando Joseph Gonzalez. Jackie cherished her whole family, and her love reflected outward and touched many who were blessed by her life. She is survived by her husband Joe Gonzalez, and her step-children, Catherine (Nathan) Herlocker, Andrew, Karen, and Keith Gonzalez; sister Frances and husband Lowery Lanier, along with their children, John (Claudia), Andy (Donna), and Hank (Sara) Lanier, and many beloved grandchildren, nieces, nephews, great-nieces and a great-nephew. She was also preceded in death by her first husband, Bill Milling, and step-son Ken Gonzalez.
Jackie graduated from Statesville Senior High. She attended Winthrop University and the Atlanta School of Art. Her passion for art and animals helped define her engaging and compassionate personality. An accomplished artist and crafter, Jackie had an eye for beauty and color that allowed others to experience a beautiful world from her perspective. She rescued and advocated for animals and found joy and peace watching birds and nature.
Those who were blessed to know Jackie were warmed by her radiant kindness and compassion. Her sense of humor and encompassing love drew people to her. In the words of her step-daughter Catherine, “She loved my daddy like the world would end without him and loved her entire family like they were the most precious jewels in the entire universe.” Everyone in her family, regardless of lineage, was graced by Jackie’s generous love, gentle humor, humility, and empathy.
Writer and philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote: “To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived — that is to have succeeded.” By this measurement, Jackie succeeded thoroughly in her life’s mission to love, to create, to care, and to share; may we all open our hearts and measure our own lives by this standard.
The family will have a celebration of life at a later date. For those who wish to honor Jackie’s life, the family suggests making a donation to an organization devoted to animals and their care in your own community. Online condolences may be made to the family at www.troutmanfuneralhome.com.
Troutman Funeral Home is serving the family.