Florabel Willsey

  • Born: June 10, 1920
  • Died: May 12, 2020
  • Location: Indianapolis, Indiana

Wilson St Pierre Funeral Service & Crematory - Franklin Township Chapel

5950 E Thompson Rd
Indianapolis, IN 46237

Tel. (317) 783-3653

Tribute & Message From The Family

Florabel Willsey passed away peacefully in her sleep on May 12, 2020, at the age of 99! She was one of Ray and Ethel Wheatley's five children, born June 10, 1920 in Wanamaker, Indiana. Her siblings were Nina (Smith), Ned, Jack, and Don Wheatley. She grew up on a farm, was a graduate of Franklin Township High School (now Franklin Central), and a life-long Franklin Township resident. She married Earl "Chub" Willsey on October 12, 1940 and was married 62 years.
Florabel was a life member of New Bethel Baptist Church, member of Daughters of the American Revolution, and a 50+ year member of the Eastern Star. She volunteered as a Precinct Committeeman & encouraged everyone to vote. She retired from Wanamaker Public Library where she worked for 16 years. She was an avid reader and loved watching sports in person and on tv. She was very active and participated daily with exercise classes, shuffleboard, and card games! She did lots of walking and was friends with everyone she met. She helped with 4-H clubs and taught several to knit, sew, and cook! She was recently honored as a special guest of the Franklin Central "Suffrage Symposium," to honor women's right to vote which celebrated 100 years this Spring! She was looking forward to her own 100th birthday in a few weeks, but instead will celebrate with her beloved husband in heaven.
Florabel is survived by many nieces, nephews, great & great-great nieces & nephews, and was a second mom and grandmother to many. She was loved very much and will be missed dearly. May 22nd services are private due to pandemic concerns. Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. Arrangements were entrusted to St. Pierre Family Funeral and Cremation Services.

Condolence & Memory Journal

When I started studying and then teaching women's history, I had enthusiastic correspondences and support from my Aunt Florabel who later also contacted me looking for book recommendations for her library. I loved that part of our connection -- it felt like a special conspiracy of women (though we lived nigh near 1000 apart!)

Posted by rebecca tippens - Colrain, MA - Family   June 10, 2020

On June 10 (would have been 100 years) I send thoughts, memories, and love. Doris

Posted by Doris Tiippens - MD   June 10, 2020

I'm so sorry to see Florabell passed. Too bad she didn't make her 100th. May she celebrate a great birthday in Heaven!

Posted by Jo Watt - Greenwood, IN - Neighbor   May 20, 2020

Florabel was in the graduating class of 1938, the 1st class of Franklin Twp. High School. She was one of 30 graduates, with my Mother, Evelyn Schoeneman Berry Tandy. I believe, Florabel was the last surviving member! She will be remembered for her sweetness and smile. Prayers to all her family.

Posted by Rosanne Berry Jannusch - Pittsboro   May 19, 2020

So sorry to learn of her passing. She was always such a part of Franklin Township, and was so friendly and glad to see everyone. I knew of Chub when I was a child when he delivered our mail, when we lived on old Indiana 29. I met Florabel years later and shall always cherish the many memories I have of her. What a heritage she leaves. I am privileged to have known her.

Posted by Phyllis Reasoner - Indianapolis, IN - Friend   May 19, 2020

We are sorry to hear of Florabel's passing. She was a great gal.

Posted by Don Rabourn    May 19, 2020

I will never forget how I met Florabel. I was a waitress working in The Breakaway at St. Francis in Beech Grove. This would have been in either 1995 or 1996. Chub was in the hospital and Florabel would always come down and eat lunch. I had the honor of being her waitress many, many times. She would always ask for me to wait on her. I would spend all the free time I had in between tables, listening to the stories of her and Chub's life together. She was a very special lady and was just one of those people who could pull on your heartstrings with ease. She touched my heart back then and I was extremely happy to meet her later in life. She was a big fan of my Dad, Steve Jeffris. My Dad has played at Wheatley's Fish Fry for years and I was also so happy to see her at his events. Whenever she saw me, her eyes would light up and ignite my heart. Her smile was contagious and she had the ability to make you feel like the most important person in the room. I will miss her dearly and I am filled with joy that she is with Chub, worshipping and honoring our Lord. I look forward to the day that we can be reunited in Heaven.

Love In Christ - April Mattingly

Posted by April Mattingly - Camby, IN - Friend   May 19, 2020

Florabel was my mother's neighbor at Greenwood Village South. Such a sweet, petite little lady! She always had a smile on her face. I will miss seeing her tootle around at GVS and chatting with her.
Dorothy Reddix (GVS neighbor)

Posted by Linda Rodebaugh - Indianapolis, IN - Family   May 19, 2020

A gracious and beautiful lady that always had a smile on her face. I'll miss seeing her in church and at Wheatley's for lunch after worship. A true Franklin Township advocate and gem!

Posted by Kevin Stone - Indianapolis, IN - Family Friend   May 19, 2020

So very sorry to hear of Florabel's passing. She and Chub were Wanamaker fixtures, present at Franklin Central games and well loved by many in our community. I extend my sincere condolences to the Willsey family.

Posted by Mark SMITH - Friend   May 18, 2020

Family Album