Virgie Lee Keith Gardner

Virgie Keith Gardner

Virgie Keith Gardner, 89, went to be with her Lord on Saturday, May 22, 2010. She was born Nov. 10, 1920 to Bessie and Larkin Keith of Willis, where she resided all her life. She approached her recent illness and approaching death with the grace with which she had lived her life. She asked for nothing, never complained, and was appreciative of eveiything anyone did for her.

Virgie was an extraordinary, kind, and caring person, who provided a loving home for both immediate and extended family members while working full time at various garment factories in the area. An angel in disguise, Virgie thought the best of everyone and was never one to judge. Always honest and genuine, those close to her never knew her to have a selfish, petty, or mean thought or act. Her heart was so pure that she simply didn’t know how.

Virgie was preceded in death by her husband Lonnie K. Gardner, her parents, her grandson

Damon Ray Gardner, nephew Tony A. Harris, and siblings Helen K. Harris, Roscoe Q. Keith, and

Hunter Keith.

Surviving are her son C.T. Gardner and his wife Betty of Floyd, VA; Kitty Gardner Dickerson and her significant other William (Bill) B. Fisch of Columbia, MO; grandson Derek (Deke) Dickerson and his wife Nicole of Los Angeles, CA; granddaughter Michelle G. Rifkin and her husband Adam of Palo Alto, CA; granddaughter Donya Dickerson and her husband Travis Adkins of Brooklyn, NY. Of special pride to her were great-grandchildren Caleb Dylan Gardner, Evelyn Marie Dickerson, and Diora Margaret Adkins.

Virgie raised two dear nephews David Ray Harris whose wife is Sandy, and the late Tony A. Harris whose widow is Lydia (Liz), all of the Dayton, OH area. Another beloved nephew David Michael Keith of Holland, MI had a special place in her heart from the time when he came to care for her for nine months after she had cardiac bypass surgery. Other nephews included Jim-Roy Harris Rochford and wife Ten of Thousand Oaks, CA, and Errol (Ernie) Harris and wife Martha of Cleveland, OH. Two dear nieces are Mary Keith Feddick and Diane Keith of Holland, Ml.

Virgie was a member of the Willis United Methodist Church. After her retirement, she enjoyed being part of the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) through which she made new friends and enjoyed helping others through service projects. She was also a member of the quilting group.

Virgie loved the team of caring caregivers she had in her recent months of poor health. To her, they were more than caregivers, she lovingly referred to them as her friends when she talked about them. She respected and appreciated the faithful and thoughtful ministry of her pastor, Rev. Joshua D. Kilbourne. She and the family appreciated the care provided by the Carillion Home Hospice and Home Health Care Staff.

The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 PM on Wednesday, May 26, at Maberry Funeral Home in Floyd. Funeral services will be held on Thursday, May 27 at 2:00 PM, interment to follow at Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Willis, VA.

Flowers are appreciated as Virgie always enjoyed their beauty. Alternatively, a donation can be made to the Virgie Keith Gardner Scholarship in Textile and Apparel Management at the University of Missouri. Donations can be sent to: 137 Stanley Hall, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211.

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