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Oxley-Heard Funeral Home has been serving the community since 1931.

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Gail Colson Sentell Lee

Gail Colson Sentell Lee

June 24, 1945 - June 3, 2020     Age: 74

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 






12 Condolences

  • Chris & PIA McKendree Posted June 4, 2020 9:27 pm

    Mrs. Lee was a fine Christian lady. She always have of herself to all of us in our youth. She spent countless hours on church trips so we as kids had a great positive Christian childhood.
    Rob and Suzanne our prayers are with your families.

  • Lois Gordon Posted June 5, 2020 3:14 pm

    So sorry for the loss of this beautiful lady, sending my love to her family, she will be missed by us all, Lois

  • Janet Cook- Nolan Cook Posted June 5, 2020 3:41 pm

    A very special lady, She will be missed… I spent twenty five years working with her at the mill…

  • Tim & Linda McCoy Posted June 5, 2020 4:49 pm

    Gail was a very special and beautiful lady and will be missed by all her church family. Prayers for all her family.

  • Carl & Barbara Posted June 6, 2020 7:26 am

    Gail was a very special and beautiful lady and will be missed bu all of us. My prayers are for the family and all her friends.

  • Gerald and Debbie Burford Posted June 6, 2020 8:48 am


  • Peggy Miller Posted June 7, 2020 4:13 pm

    Gail always visited her sister’s Janice church in Douglas Ga which is College Ave Baptist Church and was always so sweet and such a pleasure . I know Janice will miss her greatly. But we all know she has gone on to a much better place 🙏

  • Carlene Jones Barrows Posted June 7, 2020 5:59 pm

    Twice I had an unexpected visit from cousin Gail when I was experiencing a particularly rough time. The 1st time she knocked on my front door and handed me an angel which she had made from a family heirloom quilt. It meant so much to me that day and I let her know how much comfort it brought. The second time, she visited my Dad just before he went into surgery. He and I had been waiting together for quite a while. When we saw her smiling face it was very unexpected. My Dad felt happy and more at peace by her presence. Aunt Iris was there, and we prayed with him before he went in to surgery, which put a smile on his face. Cousin Gail brought happiness and peace to so many of us. I pray for the family to be comforted by so many happy memories and thoughts of the wonderful life she lived.

  • Valerie Minor Posted June 7, 2020 7:38 pm

    Ms. Gail was such a sweet lady. I had the joy of working with her at Rayonier for a short time, and she always had a smile and an encouraging word. She was so proud of her family and would always show pictures and tell me stories about them. I am so thankful for the example she was of a praying, Godly lady. She will be missed by so many! Prayers for all of you.

  • Jackie Barnes Rushton Posted June 9, 2020 10:03 am

    My Heart felt Condolences to Suzanne and all the Family, My Thoughts and prayers for comfort at this time for the loss of your Momma, Hold on to the loving memories they mean so much. RIP Mrs. Gail and God Bless

  • Curtis Mixon Posted June 15, 2020 3:13 pm

    Our condolences to Robbie and Suzanne. Your Momma was a special lady! Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

  • Glenda Ennis Posted June 22, 2020 11:12 am

    Gail was one of the sweetest ladies I know. She was a prayer warrior and I looked up to her for that. She will be missed. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family.

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