AIKEN, SC – BILLIE ANN THOMASON TILGHMAN, 84, beloved wife of Col Thomas A. Tilghman, USAF Ret., passed away peacefully, Thursday, August 26, 2021 at her home in Cedar Creek.
A native of Boca Raton, FL, Billie was a daughter of the late Frances Marion and Katy Mae Deen Thomason.
After childhood and high school in Boca Raton Billie met her future husband, Tom, while both worked at a tourist attraction in Florida named Africa USA. They married about a year later. Tom, with Billie’s encouragement, subsequently decided to complete a previously aborted college education and with two children in tow they moved to the campus of the University of Florida. Upon graduation Tom chose USAF commissioning and assignment to flight training thus beginning Billie’s life as the spouse of an AF member. With a strong sense of acceptance and flexibility she embraced this new life and excelled in that role. She embraced the life style and made every home “her home”. Her support was unwavering especially during the early years when deployments to Southeast Asia were frequent. Her adaptability was to a fault from braving the extreme cold of northern Alberta, Canada to a diplomat’s wife in a US embassy abroad to a confidant and counselor to young pilots’ wives whose husbands were under Tom’s command. Tom states that her greatest attribute was an unassuming and positive personality. After the active AF she became the spouse of a “school teacher” but this also meant moving to a few places the last of which was Germany which offered opportunities for interesting travel and learning. They came to Cedar Creek after this retirement.
Tom sums up his love and devotion to Billie with the short phrase, “one could not ask for a better wingman”.
Survivors, in addition to her husband of 64 years, Tom, include their son, James F. Tilghman (Roxanne), Boynton Beach, FL; their daughter, Cindy T. Glover (Chuck), Fort Wayne, IN; their daughter-in-law, Lisa Tilghman, Valrico, FL; five grandchildren, Eric Tilghman, Ryan Glover, Vincent Glover, Conner Tilghman, Jared Tilghman; three great-grandsons, Mayson, Dylan and Ayden; her sister, Elizabeth Capp, Sebastian, FL; her brother, Frances Marion Thomason, III (Diane), Leesburg, FL. In addition to her parents, Billie was preceded in death by their son, Lt Col Kevin D. Tilghman and her brother, Michael Thomason.
The family will receive friends Tuesday afternoon, September 14th from 1 until 2 o’clock with a memorial service to follow at 2 o’clock at Shellhouse – Rivers Funeral Home. A reception will follow the service.. Please dress comfortably.
Interment will be in Arlington National Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be directed to any Alzheimer’s research organization.
SHELLHOUSE – RIVERS FUNERAL HOME, 715 EAST PINE LOG RD., AIKEN, SC
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