Obituary of Ollie Gilbert Laughon, Jr
Ollie ‘Gilbert’ Laughon, Jr. was born on February 8, 1950 to Ollie Gilbert Laughon, Sr. and Iris Holland Laughon in Bedford, VA. Gilbert grew up on his family’s farm in Lynch Station, VA with his four older siblings; Barbara, Wallace, Mary, and Harold. As a child he learned a love for nature, and he enjoyed hunting and fishing as a teenager. Even as a young person, family was very important to Gilbert and he would often walk across the road to visit his grandparents, aunts and uncle, and cousins.
Gilbert graduated from Staunton River High School in 1968, where he decided he wanted to become an agriculture teacher. He attended CVCC for two years, and then went on to complete his Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture at Tennessee Technological University. Gilbert accepted his first teaching position at Louisa County High School. He later accepted a position at Staunton River High School and moved back to the Huddleston area. Around 1984, Gilbert left teaching and began full time operation of his sawmill, Laughon Lumber Company. For the next 30 years, he used his talent of ingenuity to grow his business into a place that he was very proud of. He loved to bring his friends over to see his latest invention and improvement to the mill.
During this time Gilbert also worked to build his house. He cut trees from his land and then milled, dried and shaped the wood for each part. Everything from the studs and sheathing to the flooring and trim were manufactured by him. Of course, he requested a little bit of help from his children every now and then. He took great pride in building his home the old-fashioned way and he loved to host family get-togethers there.
Gilbert was a wonderful father and grandfather and placed great importance in spending time with his family. He loved to take his kids for walks and hikes, bike rides and car rides, visits to nearby landmarks, and family vacations. He loved to teach them how to do and make things. He never missed an opportunity to spend time with his grandchildren no matter how big or small that opportunity was. He was always ready for a day of watching TV, running around outside, attending games and performances, or taking a special trip.
Gilbert had many hobbies and interests. He enjoyed history and visiting historical landmarks. He loved to travel. His favorite vacation was to get in a car and drive across America. He loved to build, invent things, and make toys for his grandchildren. He often joked that his favorite hobby was working. Gilbert loved being outdoors and observing nature and he built several porch swings and bluebird houses over the years to aid in this past-time. You would often find Gilbert on his front porch swing reading a book or his Bible.
Gilbert had an amazing faith and relationship with God that was evident by the way he lived his life. He directed others to Christ, whether from singing or whistling a hymn, teaching a Sunday School class, offering an encouraging word, or a helping hand. His well-worn Bible was a testament to his love for the Lord.
Gilbert had a rare neurological illness called Progressive Supranuclear Pasly. He passed away on Friday, November 17, 2023 surrounded by his children. He will be greatly missed by all that had the privilege to know him and especially by those that got to call him Dad or Pakee.
Gilbert was proceeded in death by his parents, Ollie Gilbert Laughon, Sr. and Iris Holland Laughon; his siblings, Wallace Laughon and Mary Ferrell.
He is survived by his sister, Barbara Powell; brother, Harold Laughon (Sandra); his children, Jason Laughon (Heather), Lisa Campbell (Jason), Chad Laughon (Amy); his grandchildren, Elizabeth Campbell, Nathaniel Laughon, Alanna Campbell, Owen Laughon, Anna Laughon, Kaleigh Laughon, Emma Laughon, and Isaac Laughon; his nephews and nieces, Todd Ferrell, Tara Ferell, Tiffany Ferrell, Torrey Ferrell, Shannon Laughon and Jeremy Laughon.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, November 25, 2023 at Updike Funeral Chapel, Huddleston with Rev. Bryan Sheehan officiating. The family will receive friends one hour prior to the service at Updike Funeral Home, Huddleston.To plant a beautiful memorial tree in memory of Ollie Laughon, Jr, please visit our Tree Store