Vallie Josephine ‘Jo’ Rickel, 79, of Portland, TN was a loving and devoted wife, mother, grandmother, mother-in-law, sister, aunt and friend. She passed away at 4:15 PM July 3, 2021 in her home, following a hard-fought, 8-year battle with Parkinson’s disease.
Jo was born September 26, 1941 in Franklin, KY to the late Youless Toney and Valley Reed Davenport Toney. She is survived by her devoted husband of 58 years, Bobby Harrison Rickel, son Ron Rickel, daughter-in-law Ashley Jordan Rickel, grandsons Harrison Rickel and Grayson Rickel of Birmingham, AL and a multitude of nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by both her parents, sister - Elizabeth Toney Summers - and brothers - Lymon Toney, James Toney and Edward Toney.
Jo was a baptized believer in Christ who had a heart of gold, infectious smile and was adored and affectionately known as ‘Aunt Jo’ to her many nieces and nephews and ‘Nana Jo’ to her two grandsons. She was a long-time, active member of Portland Seventh-day Adventist Church. Prior to her illness, she enjoyed attending church, serving others, baking, reading, attending to her flowers and working in the garden. She was the family matriarch, hosting large Thanksgiving and Christmas gatherings for many decades.
The family is grateful for the love, compassion and dedication of the following friends and caretakers who honored Jo’s wish of living out her final months, days and hours in her home prior to entering the gates of Heaven - Terri Murphy, Judy O’Neal, Cheryll Hinckson, Amedisys Hospice Care’s Tabatha Burdette and Brooke Hinkle and Home Instead’s Susan Williams.
Gilbert Funeral Home is honored to be entrusted with the cremation of Mrs. Rickel. There will be no visitation, memorial or graveside service.
The family has requested that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to The Michael J. Fox Foundation PO Box 5014 Hagerstown, MD 21741-5014 to assist with its single, urgent goal to eliminate Parkinson’s disease.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Vallie Josephine "Jo" (Toney) Rickel, please visit our floral store.
The Michael J. Fox Foundation
PO Box 5014, Hagerstown MD 21741-5014