November 28th, 1926 - December 12th, 2023

Geraldine Goldsby (affectionately known as Gerry) was born to Lula and Will Cottrell in Colt, Arkansas on November 28, 1926.  She fell asleep in death on December 12, 2023, at the age of 97. She is the last of nine siblings which all preceded her in death: Frenchie, Beadie, Rose Bell, Vickie, Shellie, QT, Arnell, and her twin sister Ilene.  The beauty of their family was that they all remained close throughout their lives and were never estranged from one another.  One of the greatest joys was to be with all the Cottrell sisters and listen to all their stories.


Gerry and her twin sister Ilene graduated from Lincoln High School in Arkansas.  She then migrated to Toledo, Ohio, where she lived with her older sister Beadie Hobbs.  There she married Julius Washington and had two beautiful boys, Julius and Gregory.  She then moved to Gary, Indiana, where she lived for many years and had four more children.  After her children were all grown, she married William (Bill) Goldsby, which she claimed was the last love of her life.  He preceded her in death.  She later moved to Rochester Hills, Michigan, where she lived with her twin sister and beloved niece Carolyn Williams, who took such wonderful care of them for several years.  After the death of her twin sister, she moved to California with her daughters.


She was a loving and nurturing mother of six children and their spouses:  Julius (Charlene) Washington; Gregory (Brenda) Washington; Kenny Washington (deceased); Andrea (Johnny) Williams; Diane (Kenny) Willis; Diana (Chuck) Harris; also Denise Anteneh who she loved as her own child.  She will be missed by a host of great-grandchildren, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and friends.


Gerry loved her family very much.  Although it must have been challenging raising six children on her own, she has often expressed that was the best time of her life.  She also found herself mothering a whole neighborhood of kids in her community of Gary, Indiana.  It was not uncommon to have a home filled with children.  She always said if she had a career, it would have been to be a nurse.  Instead, she spent her years raising her children.  Gerry was a very nurturing person.  If you were sick, she was always trying to find a homeopathic remedy to help. Gerry was also a spiritual person.  As a child she was baptized in the Baptist church.  She later joined St. John’s Lutheran Church in Gary and remained an active member for many years.  Upon moving to California with her daughters she enjoyed studying the Bible and attending the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses with her family there.  She ended her life surrounded by her children.  Thankfully, all her closest relatives made the trip to California to see her before her demise. She was so happy to see everyone.  While bedridden, she received many calls and was able to listen to dear ones sending their love and prayers.  She died knowing that she was dearly loved.


We will all miss Gerry, but thankfully as God’s Word tells us at Revelation 21:4, there will be a time when Jehovah will wipe out every tear from our eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore.  All these former things will have passed away.  We have the wonderful hope of seeing our dear Gerry again.


The family of Gerry would like to thank all for their many words and acts of kindness and support shown during this time of sorrow.



“Do not be amazed at this, for the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice and come out …”    (John 5:28, 29)







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Tyise and Leon Gray
January 9, 2024 11:57 pm

I never met Gerry but I knew her twin daughters Diane and Diana and Andrea and their genuine love for their mother, one another, their families and our worldwide brotherhood endeared them to us and certainly reflected the love their mother raised them with. Reading about her in the messages makes me want to greet her in the resurrection and spend time in her company. We look forward to welcoming her to Gods new world and sharing in the tremendous joy her family will have when they see her again. You all have our deepest condolences, you will see her soon.

Robert Ingram
December 26, 2023 9:20 am

Aunt Gerry was so accepting and loving. I recall the first meal she shared with us when my wife, Cizette, took me to meet her Indiana family. Aunt Gerry made a mean bean soup that I continue crafting to get it just right. Her stories she shared about her sister, Belle, my wife’s grandmother, was a demonstration of love in action. I too am one of nine children and find the fact that Aunt Gerry and her siblings stayed close and loved on one another throughout their lives. What a testimony of love in action. I look forward to our meeting in Heaven.

Yvette Blue
December 21, 2023 6:52 am

My deepest condolences to the family. May you have the comfort from Jehovah to help you through this difficult time.

Annecia Martin
December 20, 2023 7:09 pm

Will miss “Momma” but take comfort in knowing that we will be reunited in Paradise. Glad to have gotten to know you these past few years and will miss seeing you all dressed up with your pearls. Condolences to the entire family.

Barbara Miller
December 20, 2023 1:57 pm

Gerry was such a sweet and kind lady. She will be missed. She always had a beautiful smile.I can remember her calling my mother and my mother who was on her death bed just perked up and opened her eyes. She was so happy to hear her voice. They had been friends for years and they were the same age. She was blessed to have such a wonderful family who loved her.

Gail Cloud
December 20, 2023 1:07 pm

Theodore & Gail Cloud
December 20,2023

Gerry was such a dear and loving person,I’m really gonna miss the beauty tips and the laughs. She was so kindhearted and a real joy to spend time around. I’m happy for the wonderful times that she shared in my life,
She definitely had a talent for making people laugh.. I’m really gonna miss our chats and that beautiful infectious smile. ❤️ Love you all!

Barbara & Oliver Gibson
December 20, 2023 11:24 am

Our love and prayers are with the entire family. We wish you strength and comfort at this sad time.

Keenan Washington
December 20, 2023 10:18 am

Love you forever GRANDMOTHER..!! THE BEST , KISS the and hug Dad for me & aunts & uncles….♡ love grandson..

Ron and Sue
December 20, 2023 7:52 am

We really love Gerry…really…really have missed her since she left the area and so much more now. What a GRAND family reunion you will all enjoy when she hears Jesus voice and comes out. Until then may every lovely memory warm your days and your hearts.

Brenda Luster
December 20, 2023 4:18 am

Gerry was a beautiful person, inside and out and she will be dearly missed. I only remember good times with her, playing cards and eating good food and having wholesome conversations. She is a gem! Her family is following in her loving steps. May Jehovah be with you all at this difficult time, I love you all.

Larry & Diane Powell
December 19, 2023 12:34 pm

The blind are now seeing and the lame are walking, the lepers are being cleansed and the deaf are hearing, the dead are being raised up and the poor are being told the good news. Matthew 11:5 📖
What a wonderful time that will be when Christ Jesus uses his power again from our loving God Jehovah in PARADISE !!

Carter Family / Victorville
December 19, 2023 11:50 am

We just want to say that she was so sweet and kind and ALWAYS remembered us, even when we haven’t seen her in years. We loved playing hand and foot with her and just enjoying her company. She will be sorely missed.

Rita Williams
December 19, 2023 11:43 am

My love and prayers are with the entire family. Sending you love and strength during this difficult time. Gerry was an amazing person and will be deeply missed. Jehovah holds her in his memory. Acts 24:15