Mr. Peter L. Gaskins
Peter Leroy Gaskins was lovingly given life by the late Ms. Lillian Johnson who sacrificially chose the late William and Nora Cockfield Gaskins to become his parents. He was adored by his
parents, relatives, and the entire High Hill Community of Lake City, SC. His educational foundation began at Camerontown Elementary School and continued at Carver High School in
After graduating from high school, he enrolled at Shaw University, Raleigh, NC. Before completing his course of study, he was drafted by the US Army and was sent into combat in
Vietnam, subsequently earning the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal,Combat Infantryman’s Badge, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Army Commendation Medal, and
Marksman (Rifle M-14). He was honorably discharged in 1969 and returned home with permanent vestiges of having fought in a brutal war. After his discharge, his heart’s desire was to
marry Gloria, who accepted his marriage proposal. Peter and Gloria exchanged matrimonial vows at the Greater St. James AMEC on March 28th, 1970. He was a devoted, member for over
50 years. He was appointed Church Director of Transportation and filled various other leadership roles.Determined to get his degree, he resumed and completed his studies at Shaw University and earned a BS degree in Biology/Chemistry.
He returned to Lake City to teach at Olanta High School and was also asked to organize a football team which he did. A few years later, he became assistant principal at Hemingway HS and also coached girls’ basketball. Peter returned to Florence District Three, received his Master of Education degree from SC State University. As an educator, he spent the greatest number of years with Florence School District Three as a teacher, assistant principal, and varsity football coach. Later he was appointed the Director of Transportation for the district, which he held until his retirement in 2005. He also served as Transportation Director for Lake City College Preparatory Academy for two years.
Since childhood, he was fascinated by the process of death and mortuary science. Though education was his primary career, he was elated when he began part-time work at Green’s
Funeral Home and learned from the best-Luther Martin Green, founder, Haile S. and the late Bobby Green. During this time, Peter became a Licensed Funeral Director, was a member of the
6 th Congressional District Morticians Association and served for over fifty years in the funeral profession. When Mr. Haile S. Green retired, Peter was joined by two others to purchase the firm now known as Green-Cooper-Gaskins Funeral Home LLC. He became the first manager of the new partnership and served in that position from Oct 2015 through December 2017.
He was chairman of the Lake City Development Corporation, Pee Dee Rapid Transportation Authority, 3-term president of the Carver HS Alumni Association, , Lake City Elks Lodge No
1680, Delta Rho Chapter of Omega Psi Phi fraternity (joined in 1971), a charter member of the McNair 5K Walk Run Bike. He received several awards such as the 2019 Veteran of the Year for the Lake City Area, Delta Rho Chapter Businessman of the Year, and various other awards over the years from numerous professional, fraternal, and civic organizations.
Memories of him will be forever cherished by his loving wife Gloria V. Gaskins and pet dog Little Bit; his children: daughter Malkah Bat-Tzion of Conway, SC, Peter Christopher Gaskins and Barry (Glenda) Hannah of Fort Washington, MD; a brother Earl Ronnie Gaskins of Lake City, SC; three grandchildren and one great grand; five sisters/brothers-in-law: Ethel and Ronald
Clarke, Mary and Roland Dicks, Maxsena and Irvin Nelms, Jr., and David and Jane Vice; seven nieces, seven nephews and a host of other relatives, colleagues, and friends.
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