Mrs. Julia Estelle Evans died peacefully Saturday afternoon, December 26, from Covid-19 at Cape Coral Hospital in Florida. Thanks to the heroic efforts of nurses Lenny and Daniel, on Christmas Eve she was able be with her son Randy and daughter-in-law Debbie, who facilitated FaceTime calls with the rest of the family, exchanging messages of love and goodbye. She was the last of her generation in her family.
Estelle was born to Sanford Shelton Delk and Julia Melissa Keaton Delk on November 26, 1919, in Blackshear, Georgia. The family later moved to Florida, where Estelle graduated valedictorian of her class at Zephyrhills High School. She married John Dell Evans, Sr., December 24, 1939, at Spring Head, Florida. They first lived in Tampa and shortly after the beginning of World War II moved to John’s home in Georgia. After the war, they bought a farm near Newington and lived there until John’s death in 1953, which left Estelle a widow with three young sons. In 1955, she and her sons moved in with her mother in Dade City, Florida, where she found work, first at Western Auto and later at the Pasco County Tax Office.
After seeing her three sons through their education and successfully into their careers and marriages, she retired and traveled with friends around the United States, and enjoyed several cruises with fellow ballroom dancers. She lived her faith daily and was a devoted member of the First Baptist Church of Dade City, which she attended until she moved to Cape Coral in 2013. Her grandchildren and great-grandchildren were a joy to her. She followed their successes and challenges with loving interest, and set for them an inspiring example of how to face adversity and overcome it.
In addition to her husband, she was preceded in death by her son Shelton and his wife Marcia Glover Evans. She is survived by her sons John Dell Evans, Jr., and his wife Terry Porcella Evans, and Randall Colson Evans and his wife Debbie Borck Evans; her grandchildren their spouses, Dana and Wade Wright, Staci and Jeff Bennett, Allison and David Webb, John Dell III and Lindsey Evans, Brent Evans and Heather McKinlay, Shelley and Jake Needle; her great-grandchildren, Ceci, Carlee, and Catie Webb; Ansleigh Wright; Landri Bennett; John Dell IV (Jack) and Carter Evans; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Estelle was instinctively kind and empathetic, having struggled her whole life with a serious hearing deficit. Her family will always treasure her time with us and will miss that trademark smile and unfailing good humor. For many years we have maintained a tradition of gathering to celebrate her birthday every other year. This coming November we will gather again to give thanks for this wonderful mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and aunt who so graced our lives.
Graveside services will be 2:30 P.M. Saturday, January 2, at North Newington Baptist Church, where she will be laid to rest beside her late husband. Please observe all guidelines from the CDC.