Roy Drymon Markham, 89, passed away peacefully on July 16, 2019 at the Haven Suwannee Valley Hospice Care Center in Lake City, FL after an extended illness. Roy was a native and lifelong Columbia Countian. A descendant of Columbia county pioneers, he was born on June 1, 1930 at the home place on High Falls Road to Ralph Leighton and Myrtis Dortch Markham. Roy served as an Independent Duty Medic in the US Air Force, retiring after 20 years. He then became a Registered Nurse and continued to serve veterans by working at the Lake City VA until his retirement. He was a Past Exalted Ruler of the Lake City Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and past District Deputy Grand exalted Ruler. Roy was predeceased by his first wife and mother of his children, Eleanor, and by a grandson, Brandon Parks. He was also predeceased by his siblings, Hubert L. (Shirley) Markham, Joe Markham, Jim Markham, A.B. Markham, Sonny Markham and Dot Markham. One sibling, Louise Markham Witt survives.
He is survived by his wife, Shirley Craig Thomas Markham, his daughters, Donna (Grayson) Cason and Mary Lou (Cy) Perkins; step children, Johnny (Veronica) Thomas, David (Brenda) Thomas, Judy (Greg) Knudsen; grandchildren, Cy (Sophie) Perkins, Courtney (Bryan) Johnson and Savannah (Kom) Kanjad; five great grandchildren and a host of nephews and nieces also survive.
Roy lived a life of service to others, through the Elks, his job at the VA hospital and after his retirement, his many hours of volunteer work at the VA helping veterans as well as being a member of Lantern Park Baptist Church. He loved the outdoors, raising cattle and hogs with the advice and assistance of his brothers. He rarely did anything without first discussing it with A.B., Joe, Hubert L, or Sonny. He loved to fish and spent many hours on the Santa Fe and Suwannee Rivers with his brother Joe, or friends Paul Witt and L.D. Carr. He served in the Bering Straits of Alaska, Okinawa, Bermuda, the Black Hills of South Dakota, the desert of Arizona and was chosen with a handful of other airmen, to deploy on Navy ships for the purpose of retrieving astronauts from the ocean upon their return to Earth. Roy D. travelled the world and had many adventures that most Florida Cracker Boys only read about in books. He loved life and lived it to the fullest. He touched many lives positively while on this earth and was fully prepared to meet our Lord when his earthly life was over.
Funeral services will be conducted on Friday, July 19, 2019 at 4:00 PM in the Gateway-Forest Lawn Memorial Chapel with Bishop Terry Hull. Interment will follow at Bethel Methodist Cemetery, Lake City, FL. Visitation with the family will be two hours prior to the service from 2:00 PM till 4:00 PM at the funeral home.
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