In Memoriam: Leta Gilmer Fisher, 1930-2011

by Leslie Turk

Mother to Ind Co-Publisher Cherry Fisher May and mother-in-law to Co-Publisher Steve May and Business Manager Brenda Fisher, Leta Gilmer Fisher died peacefully on Christmas Day.

The joy most of us celebrated Christmas Day turned to sadness for the Fisher family over the loss of Leta Gilmer Fisher, mother to Independent Co-Publisher Cherry Fisher May and mother-in-law to Co-Publisher Steve May and Business Manager Brenda Fisher. Leta died peacefully at Cornerstone Village South Nursing Home in Lafayette after a long, full and happy life. She was 81.

Leta was born April 16, 1930, in Gilmer Hollow, Tenn., and was one of four children raised on a family farm in what she called "God's Country," a place she dearly loved. Her talent was music. Blessed with perfect pitch, she played multiple instruments, primarily piano and organ but also accordion, guitar and fiddle. A devout Methodist, she loved to perform in church choirs and played the organ for Lobelville Methodist Church for many years. In the 1960s she toured churches across middle and western Tennessee as part of an all-women's gospel trio, singing alto. But her favorite trio was the one in which performed with her sisters, who survive her: Jean Greenwood, 85, of Dickson, and Johnnia Clark, 73, of Lobelville.

Leta was married for 59 years to Hugh Edward Fisher, also now a resident of Lafayette. They had four children: Cherry Fisher May and John Hugh Fisher, both of Lafayette; Michelle Fisher Wenger of Southhaven, Miss.; and Shawn Gilmer Fisher of Las Vegas. Leta is also survived by her son-in-law Steve May and two daughters-in-law, Brenda and Julie Fisher, as well as 10 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions in Leta's name be made to the non-profit Hospice of Acadiana at 2600 Johnston St., Ste. 200, Lafayette, LA, 70503.

Graveside services will be held Friday at Gilmer Cemetery in Lobelville, Tenn. A memorial service and family visitation will be held in Lafayette on Friday, Jan. 13, from 4-6 p.m. at Fountain Memorial Gardens.