Virginia Matthews

Virginia Matthews

Sunday, October 30th, 1932 - Saturday, May 2nd, 2020
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Virginia Matthews, formerly of Indiana, passed away May 2, 2020 in Naples, Florida.

Virginia was born in 1932 in Mitchell, Indiana to Robert and Bessie (Mundy) Cooper. Jenny, as she was known to her family, graduated from Mitchell High School and went on to earn a degree from Purdue University.

At Purdue she met Gene Matthews, who would become her husband and partner for 63 years. They started married life during Gene’s Army days, living in Colorado and California, before returning to Indiana. There, they farmed first at Jamestown and later at Lebanon. Virginia became a teacher, and spent most of her career teaching 4th and 5th graders at Perry Worth Elementary School in Whitestown, Indiana. There, she was a team leader and supervised many student teachers, while also working to earn her Master's Degree in Education from Butler University.

In the early 1970s, Jenny and Gene sold the farm and moved to Michigantown and a few years later to Burlington. Once they were no longer farming, Gene and Jenny were able to travel to places those two Hoosier farm kids had only dreamed of seeing. They climbed Ayers Rock in Australia (yes, she carried her purse). Jenny ate muktuk in Alaska and poi in Hawaii, toured farms and flower fields. They saw the sights across Europe, but one of Jenny's favorite trips was driving the Going To The Sun Road in Glacier National Park. On many of their trips Jenny and Gene traveled with their dear friends Betty and Richard Spencer, and the two couples always found someplace to play bridge along the way.

After retiring, Jenny and Gene moved to their dream home in Naples, Florida. Gene took loving care of Jenny at home through the early stages of her dementia. When he could no longer care for her himself, Gene found the perfect place for them to live -- at Barrington Terrace of Naples. Gene passed away in 2018, but for Jenny he was always either "in the milkhouse" or just running late for his daily visit.

Virginia is survived by daughters Mary Lynn (Thomas) Carroll of Jardim do Mar, Madeira, Portugal, and Donna (Bill) Kallner of White Lake, Wisconsin, brother Robert (Norma) Cooper of Powder Springs, Georgia, brother-in-law Dale (Randi) Matthews of Madison, Wisconsin, and beloved nieces, nephews, cousins and friends, including the retired teachers who kept cheery greeting cards coming.

The family would like to thank Avow Hospice for helping improve Virginia's quality of life in her last years and for their support on her final journey. And no words of thanks will ever fully convey the family's gratitude to the staff of Barrington Terrace for their infinite kindness and tender, loving care.
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David Farin

Posted at 07:11pm
The works will surely miss this great member of the Great Generation! Now that is a life worth celebrating! Hoping your family enjoys the memories together, and that gathering around her makes the bitterness of Jenny's loss tempered by the sweetness of your memories of her.

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