Ruth Tonkins Jones, 79, affectionally known as my Baby by her Husband, Grandma, Granna, G-baby, Aunt Belle, Billie and Bishop by her Church family of Newport News was called home early Monday morning on September 27, 2021. She was born to the late Martha Hamlin and Willie Tonkins on December 30, 1941 in Wakefield, Virginia. She was educated in the Sussex County school system.
She is preceded in death by her mother Martha Hamlin, her father Willie Tonkins, her brothers Wilbert “Coy”, James “Gene”, Willie Lee “Punch”, and Ralph Tonkins; her sisters Doris Hamlin, Josephine Gray, Gladys Debnam, and Willie Ann “Honey” McBryde.
Ruth is survived by her Husband of 39 years Wayman Jones of Newport News, two daughters, Sandra Tonkins, Janet Davis (Timothy) of Newport News and two sons Curtis and James Tonkins (Michelle) of Newport News; Goddaughter Chiquita Elliott (Anthony) of Richmond; one sister Vernell Butts (James) of Newport News, one brother John “Wallace” Tonkins of Wakefield; eleven grandchildren, ten great-grandchildren; one sister in-law Jean Gorham of Norfolk; six brother in laws Kelvin Jones of Hampton, Vincent Jones (Barbara) of Windsor, Donell Jackson (Clarissa) of Burns Georgia, James Roberts (Jennifer) of Chesapeake, Tracy (Alissa) of Elizabeth City North Carolina, and Darrel Britt of Indianapolis; a special and devout friend Tonya Ferebee of Newport News, and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Ruth lived a life full of love and had a sweet caring spirit. She was affectionally loved by the many kids that passed through her home as she served as babysitter for many years. Till this day she is remembered for never letting a child go hungry under her care and treating each child with the same love as if they were her own grandchildren. In 1998 Ruth joined Rising Star Christian Church where she served on the Usher Board until her health began to fail. While on the Usher Board she served as Vice President for several years. Her smile and her bubbly spirit will be greatly missed. In the words of her favorite song sung by the Rising Star Male Chorus, “If you just hold out till tomorrow, if you just keep the faith through night, everything will be alright.” In 2018 she was diagnosed with Breast Cancer; the battle was tough but she fought hard and overcame every obstacle that cancer threw at her and on December 26, 2019 she became cancer free. The road to recovery was a test that made her faith and her trust in the Lord stronger. No matter how hard the road got, she never forgot to thank the Lord for how He brought her through. Ruth held out and she got the victory early on Monday morning when her number was called for her to leave this earthly home. She is absent in the flesh but her love, her caring spirit, her jokes, her smile and all the memories that she made with each person will live on in our hearts. Fly high my Baby, fly high Granna, fly high G-Baby, fly high Aunt Belle, fly high Bille, fly high Bishop until we see you again!
A Celebration of Life service will be held 11am Saturday, October 9, 2021 at Restoration and Faith Ministry 2114 Wickham Avenue, Newport News, VA. Viewing will be held 4-6 pm Friday, October 8, 2021 at Shivers Funeral Chapel. Please keep the Jones family in your prayers. View Memorial Videos