Press "Enter" to skip to content


John Bennett Van Over, 12/05/1941 (Portsmouth, Va.) – 3/24/12 (Richmond, Va.) of Mathews, Va., formerly of McLean, Va., succumbed due to complications following a successful kidney transplant.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Merle and Ann Holzel Van Over of Arlington and Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

He was the brother of Patricia Van Over Edwards of Annapolis, Md., and Mary Elizabeth Van Over Gilligan of Washington, D.C.; beloved husband of 44 years and best friend of Barbara Hook Van Over; loving father and father-in-law of Virginia Van Over and Freddie Kitchens, and devoted grandfather of Bennett Lorraine Kitchens and Camden Marie Kitchens.

Born in Portsmouth, he attended St. Paul’s Elementary School. After family moved to Arlington in 1955, he graduated in 1960 from Washington and Lee High School. John attended Ferrum College and graduated from West Georgia College in Carrollton, Ga.

John served in the U.S. Air Force from 1963-1967, was a veteran of the Vietnam War, 1966-67. Later he worked for Upjohn Healthcare Services where he managed 33 offices in seven states. He was the recipient of the prestigious W. E. Upjohn Award and served as a member of the Board of UHS. After retiring from UHS, he operated a successful shipping company, The Packaging Store, in Vienna, Va., until moving to Mathews.

John was a faithful member of Francis de Sales Catholic Church and a 4th degree in the Knights of Columbus. John enjoyed the company of his buddies through several groups. He was a proud member of American Legion Post 225 in Falls Church and served in several leadership positions.

He was active in shooting sporting clays and held numerous trophies for shooting. He was a member of loosely organized gentleman’s fishing group who fished off of his boat, Yes Virginia. He was a willing loser of a poker group he started.

After taking up golf at age 68, he played with the Tuesday/Thursday Duffers. He also served on the Board of the Mathews Yacht Club.

His friends remember John as loyal, considerate, kind and gentle. Because of his demeanor and his willingness to help with any and all tasks around the house, one commented that not everyone has a John Van Over living in their house …Now he is being helpful in the house of the Lord.

A memorial mass will be said at St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church in Mathews on Friday, March 30, 2012, at 11 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to National Kidney Foundation, 1742 E. Parham Road, Richmond, Va. 23228 or Mathews Vol. Rescue Squad, 94 Cricket Hill Road, Hudgins, Va. 23076.