Gwen Wilkerson, Wife of David Wilkerson, Dies at 81

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Gwen Wilkerson, wife of the late Rev. David Wilkerson, passed away Thursday morning. She was 81.

"She… went to be with Christ with great peace and even anticipation," her children -- Debbie, Bonnie, Greg and Gary Wilkerson -- said in a joint statement on the World Challenge website.

Mrs. Wilkerson's death comes just over a year after a car crash claimed the life of her husband. The April 2011 accident left her temporarily wheelchair-bound.

The devasting crash and resulting death of her husband was latest of several challenges Mrs. Wilkerson faced in her life, including several battles with cancer. Her family said she faced each tragedy with steadfast faith.

"She had an amazing resolve and unshakeable faith, exemplified throughout her life in her numerous battles with cancer," they said.

Wilkerson's children thanked ministry partners for their prayers and longtime support.

"She prayed for you daily and always considered it a great privilege to be part of this ministry," they said.

Already well-wishers have flooded the World Challenge Facebook page with condolences.

"What mixed emotions ... this lady whom I never met touched my life so much xxx. God be with you all," Di Brittenden wrote.

"Lord, You used these two fine servants to reach millions with their ministries," Jim Haire wrote. "I pray comfort for Gary, and for all the family. I know You'll still work through them, World Challenge, and Times Square Church. Thank You for blessing me time and again through the Wilkerson family."

Rev. Wilkerson founded Times Square Church in New York City and is the author of the well-known book, The Cross and the Switchblade. He also founded World Challenge in 1971.

The renowned pastor was killed Apirl 27, 2011 in a head-on collision with a tractor trailer in Texas. He was 79.

Offer your condolences on World Challenge's Facebook page.

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