Virginia Anne Redhead Bethune | obituaries

Virginia Anne Redhead Bethune

Virginia Anne Redhead Bethune of Harrisonburg, Virginia passed away on Wednesday November 16, 2022.

Born January 3, 1936 in Tampa, Florida, Mrs. Bethune was the daughter of the late Dr. John A. and Virginia Potts Redhead.

Virginia grew up in Charlotte, NC and Greensboro, NC. She graduated from Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia with a BA in Philosophy, Phi Beta Kappa. Virginia married Dick Bethune on May 3, 1958 in Greensboro, NC. As a pianist and organist, she was a staff member of the Blacksburg United Methodist Church from 1989 to 2005. Her husband, Richard Engelhardt Bethune, served as pastor of the Presbyterian (PCUSA) in Virginia from 1959 to 1993. From 1992 to 1999 they traveled extensively together to present a short course: A Happy Heart: Health, Humor and the Christian Faith to 2,000 people, after which time Dick and Virginia developed a strong interest in building and playing harps. Her collaboration with Habitat for Humanity partners and musicians in Blacksburg and Harrisonburg raised $100,000 from various benefit concerts and 9 CDs of harp, vocal and organ/piano repertoire which helped provide housing for 3 Habitat families to provide.

Virginia and Dick Bethune provided a loving home for their three children and their children’s friends. Their patience, humor and devotion to each other and to their faith are a powerful example in life. Virginia was welcoming and hospitable. She loved setting a nice table and sharing meals with family and friends. She was a great seamstress and very economical. Virginia enjoyed quiet times being in the mountains, playing golf, traveling and taking family vacations. She liked to wear funny hats and party masks. Her strength and protection as a mother and grandmother could always be counted on. Virginia was a devoted Christian and citizen. The protection of civil rights and the marginalized was very important to her.

Her passion for music led her to a career as a church musician and later as a certified music practitioner. After the age of 60 she learned to play the harp and later taught others how to play. Playing at the bedside of the UVA and Sentara hospitals was very important to her. Her most recent dream was to create a consortium of musicians and medical professionals to combine music and healing. Virginia’s caring heart has been an inspiration to many.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by husband Dick Bethune and daughter Anna Collins.

Survivors include daughter Julie Boulais and husband Michael, and grandchildren Jack Hilton, Rachel Boulais and Jacqueline Boulais; daughter Mary Jordan, granddaughter Clara Schweiger and husband Max; son-in-law Mike Collins and granddaughter Liza Collins and great-granddaughter Kaia Nelson, granddaughter Logan Collins and wife Jess Trapeni and great-grandchildren Oliver and Jackson Collins. Also surviving are a sister, Julia Redhead Bristol; a brother, John Agrippa Redhead, and many nieces and nephews.

A Resurrection Witness service will be held on Sunday, December 4, 2022 at 2:00 p.m. at Blacksburg Presbyterian Church, 701 Church Street, SE, Blacksburg, VA 24060, conducted by Rev. Sarah Wiles and Chaplain Jeff Carr . The burial will take place at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Sunnyside Fellowship Fund, 600 University Boulevard, Suite L, Harrisonburg, VA 22801 or American Climate Partners https://americanclimate

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