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Life as we know it ended for Birdie of Fishersville, on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2011.

Her new journey and education has taken off with wings.

She was blessed with a loving and dedicated family. During her first 11 years with us, she had a happy and active youth, interrupted only by the loss of her father, Oscar Edward Minor II, when she was eight years old.

At the age of 11, she was "blessed" with a terrible tragedy, polio. As horrible as this disease was, the ensuing paralysis and her fight would define a truly remarkable life; a life of inspiration, dedication to God, family, friends, and her remarkable students. Many benefitted from knowing her. No one walked away from her without a wonderful feeling of having met an angel. She had a long list of achievements. This newspaper doesn’t have enough pages to list them all. Aside from her many achievements in education and work, her emergence from polio, and her triumphs with self-reliance and determination are monumental. Her skills are at rest now, but not lost. She passed on her love and skills to thousands who met and worked with her.

Birdie spent her entire working life as a speech and hearing pathologist at Woodrow Wilson Rehabilitation Center in Fishersville. She retired in 2006. She continued as a consultant from then until passing.

Birdie was preceded in death by her loving and dedicated family members, Harry Lee Smith, 1958; Mamie Elizabeth Clements Smith, 1968; Birdie Josephine Smith Minor Parker, 2006, and Oscar Edward Minor III, 2009.

She is survived by her loving and dedicated brothers, who are truly blessed by having been there with her, Samuel D. Parker Jr. and Tommy L. Minor; and her many friends and colleagues, who are truly "family."

The family is especially grateful to the wonderful congregation and clergy of Tinkling Spring Presbyterian Church. Their love and inspiration are legendary.

And again, special thanks to the truly great people at Augusta Health. Dr. Faulkenberry, thank you for your loving care, and attention. The ICU staff, you are the best. This institution is a wonderful asset to the community.

Also, thank you to her many caregivers, visiting nurses, and others who spent so much of their lives helping Birdie throughout her life.

Birdie is certainly in a better place and cancer can’t stop her now, just another challenge.

She talked the talk, and polio couldn’t stop her from walking the walk.

Services were at Tinkling Spring Presbyterian Church on Saturday, Nov. 5. Visitation was from noon to 1 p.m. The eulogy began at 1 o’clock in the church, and graveside services followed in the church cemetery. Friends and family congregated in Spring Hall after the services.

McDow Funeral Home provided their wonderful expertise in navigating through this celebration of life. This being the second time they have been there for the family, we are thankful for their superior skills and gifted spirits.

While Birdie loved flowers, she would be most happy if expressions of sympathy were made in contributions to a fund she founded at Woodrow Wilson Rehabilitation Center. "The Birdie Fund" provides funding for the students, who don’t have the money, to participate in activities while at the center. Please send your contribution to The Birdie Fund, WWRC, Box W 528, P.O. Box 1500, Fishersville, Va. 22939.


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