Having witnessed the Chicago Cubs win a World Series, and confident it wouldn’t happen again, Billy Franklin Hyslop accepted his place in paradise on May 28, 2022, in Kissimmee, FL. He was 94 years old.
Billy was born in Indianapolis, IN on August 2, 1927. Adopted and raised by Thomas and Ura Hyslop of Linton, IN, Billy grew up an only child who always suspected he had a biological brother. It took nearly 90 years, the invention of the internet, and a determined daughter to track down his biological siblings, allowing him to finally meet the surviving children of the brother he wondered about for decades.
After graduating from State Lab School in Terre Haute, Billy attempted to join the military before learning he would not qualify for enlistment due to his color blindness. He studied and memorized the eye chart for the Navy testing center, passing the exam and securing a commission to Guantanamo Bay, beginning his first tour in the US Navy. During his time in the service, he spent time in Panama, Tokyo, Hawaii, Sweden, England, and Scotland, among others.
Completeing his first tour of duty Billy came home to visit his mother, who ran a boarding house. There he met a young gal named Joan Wade, who was renting a room in Terre Haute for work and he quickly found himself smitten. The feeling was not mutual. While she thought he was quite full of himself she began to see his true nature and gave him a chance. One day, after driving to meet her family for the first time, he proposed in the car on the way home and she agreed, but only after insisting on a proper proposal.
Billy and Joan’s adventures continued for over 70 years. Their union produced 5 children (Vicki, Thomas, Janine, Margaret, & Jennifer), 7 grandchildren (Theodore, Amber, Celia, Kenneth, Tabbatha, Joshua, & Valerie), and 9 great-grandchildren (Kadence, Weston, Amiyah, Elyjah, John, Grace, Izayah, Jaydah, & Janea), earning him the name “Poppy”. Billy was preceded in death by three of his children: Vicki, Thomas, and Jennifer.
Billy served his country in World War II & the Korean War. Following his stay in the Navy, he began a 35-year career with AT&T, proudly working as a “telephone man” in the days before cell phones. A true engineer to the core, he was practical and methodical. He wore shirts with two pockets, in which he kept a mechanical pencil and a pen, typically a matching set. Always.
Anyone who met him knows that Billy was a gentle man and a caring soul. He was a proud member of the Church of Christ and active member of the community. Billy volunteered his time with the Guardian Ad Litem program, Osceola County Democrats, JDRF, Give Kids The World Village, and drove children to important medical appointments during his years as a Shriner.
Billy Hyslop was a loving and patient patriarch. He led by quiet example, showing up when he was needed, always on time. While his family grieves the loss of their Poppy he leaves behind a legacy of love and compassion here on Earth.