Billye Jo ‘B.J.’ Nagi Whiteowl

INDEPENDENCE — Billye Jo “B.J.” Nagi Whiteowl, 67, of Independence, a former Parsons resident, passed away at her home on Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020.

Billye Jo Thomas was born on June 25, 1953, to Jack and Wanda Jean (Bryson) Thomas in Odessa, Texas. As a young girl, she moved with her family to Savannah, Georgia, where she grew up and attended schools.

As a young woman, B.J. worked at a Panama City Beach, Florida, reptile sanctuary. A well-rounded and accomplished person, B.J. earned a doctorate in theology and was an ordained minister. Professionally, she was a speech therapist in the public school system.

A member of the Cherokee Nation, Nagi was a clan mother and served on the Elders Council. She knew no strangers and would take care of anyone. She also enjoyed traveling, including trips to Europe. She loved animals of all kinds and had numerous exotic pets.

Survivors include a daughter, Cyprus Jones of Parsons; two  grandchildren, Sylas Hickles and SeQuoyah Rayn Reece; and two sisters, Charlotte Rommel of Morehead and Molly Maxwell of Bradenton, Florida.

She was preceded in death by her parents and a sister, Marietta Kay Tankersly.

Following cremation, there will be a memorial service held at a later date that will be announced by Forbes-Hoffman Funeral Home.

A GoFundMe account named Nagi Whiteowl Funeral Expenses has been set up by the family to help defray funeral expenses.

Online condolences may be left at

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