Gulf County remembering longtime commissioner

Newly Elected Gulf Co Commission Dies
Published: Nov. 30, 2022 at 9:03 PM CST
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GULF COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) -A man who touched many lives across Gulf County, is gone too soon. Billy Traylor, a longtime Gulf County Commissioner who was recently re-elected, passed away.

“We lost a good friend and a dedicated individual who loved this county and who has always made a difference,” Sharon Gaskin, sister-in-law, said.

”Mr. Billy had the kindest heart and he was the hardest-working person I have ever known. The man did not want to sit still so he had so many projects that he was always working on and just did so much to make our community a better place and with a smile on his face,” Kelli Godwin, Gulf County TDC Executive Director, said.

Traylor recently passed away after battling brain cancer. Loved ones said his passing was not expected and that he would tell them he would ‘beat this.’

“It just didn’t happen and it was a shock to lose him so fast,” Gaskin said.

Traylor had recently been elected as a Gulf County Commissioner for District 2. He previously served as a Gulf County Commissioner for two decades. After not seeking re-election for years he fell into a role with the TDC focusing on Parks and Recreation.

Not only did Traylor care for many parks, he also came up with numerous projects.

“The honor walk at Veterans Memorial Park was one of his favorite projects because he was a veteran himself and he took so much pride in that project specifically,” Godwin said.

Family members said what drove Traylor was his love for the community. Gaskin said one of the projects he was hoping to get to as commissioner was fixing up the old courthouse in Wewahitchka.

‘I think this was where he really wanted to finish up the things he had not done,” Gaskin said.

Friends and family said they hope whoever fills his shoes, will do what Traylor would’ve wanted.

“The governor will decide who, he appoints someone to fill that position. For at least two years until the next general election,” Sandy Quinn, Gulf County Commissioner, said.

The family said they hope whoever is put in the seat will reach out to them.