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On June 15, 2016, Virginia T. Rogers a resident of Riverside Convalescent Center in Mathews, Virginia, passed peacefully into her loving Savior’s arms, an event she had prepared for long ago.  She was seven weeks shy of her 101st birthday.

She was born in Timber Ridge, Virginia on August 8, 1915 to Beulah S. and Theodore Taylor, both now deceased. Her younger siblings, Reichardt Taylor (eventually a missionary to Brazil) and LuEllen T. Atkinson (a school teacher in Prince George) are both deceased. She was raised in Leesburg, Florida, and graduated from Florida State University in 1937. She married David E. Rogers of Daytona Beach in a lovely outdoor wedding on her aunt’s property on Oak Island in Orlando in 1937. They moved to Baltimore, Maryland, where Anna Virginia was born and then to Hopewell, Virginia, where Mary Josie was born. They were divorced in 1945 and Virginia became a single parent when that was unheard of. She raised their daughters by working for Social Security in Baltimore and becoming a teacher in the Hopewell schools. She achieved a Master’s degree in Special Education from the University of Virginia in 1961. She subsequently was the first Special Education teacher in that newly created department in Hopewell schools. She also taught reading during her tenure. After retiring she decided to offer her teaching skills to Wycliffe Bible Institute as a teacher to missionary children in Brazil and then in Peru. She had many wonderful adventures and met many lifelong friends there.

She loved pottery, plant life, the arts and animals. There were always cats around. An independent soul, she decided when she was 84 that she would give up her home and move to an independent living place, The Fountains, in Tarboro, North Carolina. She returned to Hopewell four years later and lived at Brighter Living for six years until the time came when she needed more care. She then moved to Riverside Convalescent Center in Mathews where she had been for the last seven years. She was a loving Christian person who always thought of others first. Even as she deteriorated over the last three years she retained her sweet nature. At Riverside she was known as “Little Mama” and was cared for as a family member.

She is survived by daughters, Anna Draper of Mathews and Josie Cuffe (Frank) of Chester. Also by grandchildren, Bobby Draper (Hope) of Hopewell, Don Draper (Karen) of Dothan, Alabama, Laura Rexroad (Dennie) of Knoxville, Tennessee, David Lovelady of Colonial Heights, Bryan Cuffe (Mariola) of Stephens City and Debbie Baus (Darin) of Peachtree City, Georgia. Her great-grandchildren include Carol Draper of Hopewell, Kendall Bryant (Danny), Claudia Andrews and Robbie Draper of Dothan, Blake Rexroad (Andrea) of Aiken, South Carolina, Virginia Mathios (Elias) of New York City, Carmen Green (Patrick) of Providence, Rhode Island, Aaron Rexroad of Greenwood, South Carolina, Sarah Ligon of Chase City, Allison Doran of Cannon, New Mexico, Libby Doran of Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania, and Demi and Dana Baus of Peachtree City. Her great-great-grandchildren are Jackson and recently born Hazel Green of Providence. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews on the Rogers, Taylor, Draper and Lovelady sides of the family.

A memorial service will be held at Westville Baptist Church in Mathews on July 9 at 2 p.m. and at West End Presbyterian Church in Hopewell where she had been a member since 1942. Although this latter service will be held on August 1, the exact details will be announced later. Burial will be in the family plot in Leesburg, Florida.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the one abiding charity that she loved, Wycliffe Bible Translators (P.O. Box 628200, Orlando, Florida 32862-8200), specifically in the name of her longtime friends with whom she served in Peru, Laraine and Steve Mann who continue the work of the organization.  

Arrangements are being made by the Foster-Faulkner Funeral Home of Mathews.