Funeral service for Matilda Evangeline Fowler Franklin Parkes, age 97, of Park City, TN, will be held at 2 PM on Monday, December 13, 2021 at Higgins Funeral Home with Bro. Tim Franklin and Bro. Jason Caldwell officiating. Burial will follow in Blanche Cemetery.
Van was born on February 29, 1924 in Limestone County, AL to the late Rollie Everett Fowler and Mary Elizabeth Bottom. She was of the Baptist Faith and attended Park City Baptist Church. Mrs. Parkes was a 1943 graduate of Ardmore High School and earned her teaching certificate from Florence State Teachers College. Van worked as a teacher with Oak Grove School in Limestone County. She married her first husband, Raymond Franklin on January 7, 1945 and they raised six children on their family farm in Blanche, TN. Later in life she worked at K-Mart and Parisians in Huntsville, AL. She married her second husband, Ralph Parkes in 1995 and moved to Elora, TN and later to her present home in Park City, TN. Together Ralph and Van attended Washington Street Church of Christ for many years. Van enjoyed family gatherings with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, gardening, watching the Atlanta Braves and her favorite activity was mowing her grass. She lived a full and active life and will be missed by all. Van passed away on December 10, 2021 at her home in Park City.
Survivors include her daughters, Lynda Hicklen of Dover TN, Barbara (David) Crawford of Fayetteville, TN, and Cindy (Marty) Parton of Hazel Green, AL; sons, Ron Franklin of Huntsville, AL, Billy Franklin (Gary Treidel) of Fayetteville, TN, and Tim (Donna) Franlin of Hokes Bluff, AL; brothers, Jim (Phyllis) Fowler and Mickey (Pat) Fowler both of Toney, AL; step-daughter, Carol (Tom) Ralstin of Covington, TN and their daughters, Beth Ralstin and Gail (David) Perry; grandchildren, Bridgette Jones, April Ford, Anthony Franklin, Bryan Franklin, Jeff Franklin, David Franklin, Brett Crawford Joshua Blanks, and Nathan Parton; 27 great-grandchildren; and numerous step-grandchildren, step-great-grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.
In addition to her parents, Van was preceded in death by her first husband, Earnest Raymond Franklin, Jr.; second husband, Ralph E. Parkes; sister, Drucilla Barnett; brothers, Elliott, Harold, Robert, Everett, Jr., and Thomas Ray Fowler; and son-in-law, Jimmy Dale Hicklen.
Visitation with the family will be from 12 PM until 2 PM on Monday at Higgins Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memorial Processing, 501 St Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105-9959; Park City Baptist Church (Lottie Moon Christmas Offering Fund) 2809 Huntsville Hwy., Fayetteville, TN, 37334; or to a charity of your choice.
Higgins Funeral Home is honored to be serving the family of Matilda Evangeline Fowler Franklin Parkes.