Gail Colson Sentell Lee, 74 of Fernandina Beach is worshipping in her eternal home and is in the presence of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ as of Wednesday, June 3rd. She passed peacefully at the Douglas Center for Caring located at Baptist Hospital, Jacksonville, Florida.
Gail was born on June 24, 1945 at the McCoy Clinic in Folkston, Georgia to Bernice McGlew Colson and John Christopher Colson. Gail and her sister were adopted by Forrest H. Sentell and Effie Lee Sentell on December 20, 1951. She enjoyed her many adventures growing up in Fernandina. As a young child she began attending First Baptist Church, on the corner of 5th and Alachua. She trusted Jesus as her Savior and was baptized at the age of twelve. The church is a building but so many people poured love into her life and they truly became a second family. Gail served many years teaching GAs, leading the youth group and also the prayer ministry. She truly lived her favorite scripture- Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding in all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy Paths (Proverbs 3: 5-6). She believed in the power of prayer and interceded for others; always with a thankful heart.
Gail was a member of the Fernandina Beach High School Class of 1963 and found great joy in the lifelong fellowship with her classmates. In her teen years she worked as a waitress at her family’s business; Sentell’s Restaurant (now the Marina Restaurant). After graduating from High School, she began working at ITT Rayonier in the Lab and worked there until her retirement.
Gail enjoyed spending time with family and friends. That time would always turn into sweet fellowship and prayer for others. One of her favorite hobbies was working in the yard and caring for her many flowers. She saw God’s beauty in our island’s sunsets and would often drive to the docks to watch His beautiful display. Every Christmas she hosted lunch for all aunts, uncles, cousins and their extended family that wanted to attend. It was always a special gathering time and she made sure her house was decorated in every room for their enjoyment. She enjoyed trying different crafts and would make things so, that people she loved would have something special that she made. She and Hubert were blessed to be able to travel to all 50 states, Canada and Europe with special friends that we call family, Ernest and Yvonne Futch.
She was preceded in death by her husband, James Hubert Lee. They were married for 56 years before his passing and left a wonderful example to her children and grandchildren of selfless love. Gail is survived by her children, Charles Robert Lee (Dawn) and Charlotte Suzanne Willis (Todd); her grandchildren Morgan Lee Leonard (Will), William Blake Willis, Leanne Lee Bryan (Westin), John Colson “Cole” Willis and her one year old great grandson James McKinley (Mac) Leonard, who brought her great joy. She is also survived by her sisters Janice Griffin (Dick-deceased), Holly Sentell (Elmer Jutte); brother in law Gilbert Lee (Judy), sisters in law, Merlene Lee, Janice Tyre, Christine Kerckel, Mae Lee (Daniel- deceased) and many special nieces and nephews.
Her family and friends will gather at 11 a.m. Tuesday, June 16th at First Baptist Church 1600 South 8th Street, Fernandina Beach, Florida. Distancing guidelines will be followed and there will also be an option for viewing the service live for those that cannot attend in person.
A graveside service at Bosque Bello Cemetery will be held at a later date with only the immediate family attending.
Gail loved beautiful flowers but we would also suggest to anyone that would like to give in her memory to please donate to the First Baptist Church Benevolence Fund, 1600 S 8th, Fernandina Beach, Florida 32034