Cover photo for Emma Theresa (Gain) Tarkington's Obituary
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1945 Emma 2024

Emma Theresa (Gain) Tarkington

March 1, 1945 — June 24, 2024

Gun Barrel City, Texas

Emma Theresa Tarkington, 79, passed away on June 24, 2024, in Tyler, Texas. She was born on March 1, 1945, in Pocahontas, Arkansas to parents Cleatious Sylvester and Frances (Blissenbach) Gain.

Emma married the love of her life, James Douglas Tarkington, on July 27, 1963, at St. Edward’s Catholic Church in Athens, Texas. Together they made a loving home for their three children, Teresa, Rhonda, and Keith.

Throughout her life, Emma found immense joy in having family over for parties and get-togethers. Her absolute favorite thing was gathering her loved ones under one roof, creating unforgettable memories filled with laughter and love. Her hospitality and welcoming nature left a lasting impact on all who had the pleasure of knowing her.

Apart from being a fantastic hostess, Emma had a passion for genealogy, spending countless hours delving into the history of her family tree. She also found solace in yard work, tending to her garden with care and dedication. She loved her craft group. Additionally, Emma dedicated her time to volunteer work, always eager to give back to her community and uplift those in need. Emma had a strong faith and love of God as reflected in her daily life. 

Emma lived a life full of warmth and love that she generously shared with everyone around her, she will be dearly missed by all who knew and loved her.

The family will be holding a memorial service on Monday, July 1, 2024, at 11:00am at St. Edward’s Catholic Church, 800 E. Tyler St., Athens, Texas, 75751.

Emma is preceded in death by her parents, Cleatious and Frances Gain; sisters, Sister Alphonse M. Gain, Elizabeth Johnsey, Henrietta Manuel, and Bernice Bliss; and brothers, Anton “Tony” Gain, and William “Bill” Gain.

Emma is survived by her loving husband of over 61 years, James Tarkington of Gun Barrel City, TX; daughter, Teresa Anne Duncan and husband Mark of Heath, TX; daughter, Rhonda Lee Goldring and husband Andy of Flint, TX; son, Keith Douglas Tarkington of Gun Barrel City, TX; granddaughter, Ashley Michelle Lewis and husband Daniel of McLendon-Chisholm, TX; grandson, Cory Alan Duncan of Rockwall, TX; grandson, Joe Douglas Tarkington and wife Isabella of Trinidad, TX; grandson, Samuel Douglas Tarkington and wife Sophia of Trinidad, TX; grandson, Braedon Lee Goldring and wife Savannah of Lindale, TX; granddaughter, Timberlyn Nikelle Baker and husband Todd of Bullard, TX; great-grandchildren, Noah Daniel Lewis, Rowan James Lewis, Sawyer Lee Lewis, Kadence Mae Lewis, and Lily Marie Tarkington, as well as numerous other extended family, friends and loved ones.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Emma Theresa (Gain) Tarkington, please visit our flower store.

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