Sibyl Geraldine ‘Jerry’ Elkins

Sibyl Geraldine “Jerry” Elkins, 88, of Cobden, died Friday, March 6, 2020, at The Anchor of The Voyage Senior Living in Marion. 

She was born on Nov. 21, 1931, in Paragould, Ark., the daughter of William Everett and Pearl Christina Smith Clayton. 

She is survived by her children, Stanley (Marilyn) Elkins and Pamela Jean Graham, all of Anna; grandchildren Justin (Nicki) Graham of Tennessee, Shannon Graham of North Carolina, Sarah Elkins of Anna, and Jason (Jessica) Elkins of Dongola; great-grandchildren Jacob Graham, Logan Graham and Royce Thompson; siblings Jerrie Clayton, Vurtis (James) Duckworth, Louise (Art) Pender and Carolyn (William) Bird; a brother-in-law, Joseph Hankla; other relatives and friends. 

She was preceded in death by her parents; siblings Viola Hankla, Loretta (Dennis) Harris and Dennis Clayton; and a sister-in-law, Marie Clayton. 

She was a kind and compassionate servant of the Lord. She had a love for people that was undeniable. If you were blessed enough to call Geraldine a friend or family, then you knew what unconditional love felt like. Her home never saw a stranger and you never left hungry. 

She was a single mom who worked at the Cobden Basket Mill. She ran Jerry’s Beauty Salon for decades, attained her food service license and worked at Union County Hospital. 

Later she worked at Cobden School cafeteria and became a second mom to many generations of Appleknockers until retirement. 

She had a reputation for cooking and her pies, cookies and Christmas candies were family favorites. Anyone who knew Geraldine will miss her signature phone greeting “Howdy-do how are you?” She was a true gift from God and we were all better for knowing her.

Funeral services were at 1 p.m. Tuesday, March 10, at Rendleman & Hileman Funeral Home in Cobden, with the Rev. Randy Wright officiating. Interment was in Kelly Cemetery. 

Memorials can be made to Nazarene Missions International or to Hospice of Southern Illinois. 

To view the obituary and to leave online condolences for the family, visit 

Rendleman & Hileman Funeral Home in Cobden was in charge of arrangements.

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158

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