Cover photo for Anne Caroline Gaines McKinney's Obituary
Anne Caroline Gaines McKinney Profile Photo
1944 Anne 2024

Anne Caroline Gaines McKinney

November 27, 1944 — June 18, 2024

Crystal River, Florida

Anne Gaines McKinney, known affectionately as "Miss Purple" to her students and "Purple Anne" to her coworkers, passed away on June 18 at the Citrus Hospice House in Lecanto. She was a beloved educator who dedicated her life to helping children learn how to read. Born on November 27, 1944, in Charleston, West Virginia, Anne's passion for literature and education shone brightly throughout her career. Anne began her journey at Stephenville High School in Texas and later pursued higher education at Texas Woman's University, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Education. Her commitment to learning extended beyond the classroom as she obtained a Master's Degree in the field as well. During her professional career, Anne taught English Literature at Eustis High School in Eustis, Florida, and served as a Reading Specialist and Administrative Assistant for the Federal Title One Reading and Migrant Education Programs for Lake County Schools. Her impact on generations of students was immeasurable as she instilled a love for reading and learning in all those she taught. In addition to her thriving career in education, Anne was a published photographer with a particular interest in capturing the beauty of Florida birds. Her love for photography mirrored her appreciation for nature and exploration. She found joy in traveling with friends and family, always eager to discover new landscapes and cultures. Outside of her professional and creative pursuits, Anne had a heart as vast as the sky above. Known for her generosity, care, and compassion, she touched the lives of many with her selfless acts of kindness. Her love for cats was matched only by her love for helping people in need. Anne McKinney is preceded in death by her father, Joseph Holt Gaines II; mother, Blanche Hightower Gaines; brother, Joseph Holt Gaines III; and sister Blanche Gaines Milam. She is survived by seven nieces: Lucy Thompson, Margaret Anne Milam, Catherine Gaines Melvin, Jennifer Gaines, Laura Rackar – each carrying forward her legacy of warmth and generosity. In honoring the memory of Anne Gaines McKinney, let us remember not only the teacher who shaped minds but also the compassionate soul who touched hearts wherever she went. May her spirit continue to inspire us to embrace knowledge with passion and kindness with grace. In Lieu of flowers, please make contributions to The Cat Rescue Society Inc., PO Box 1078, Sorrento FL 32776. Online Guestbook available at  Arrangements by Harden/Pauli Funeral Home, Eustis, FL.

Rest in peace, dear Anne.

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