Virginia Rose Wilt

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Virginia Rose Wilt, 83, Joplin, formerly of Vernon County, passed away on Saturday, March 8, 2008, at the home of her step-granddaughter, Dana Lynn Keith and Donny Strait, where she had resided for the past year and four months. She was born on July 24, 1924, of Carmi, Ill., the eldest of six children, to Harry McClure Jenkins and Laura Bell Young. She was married to Arthur D. Smith, in February 1945. He was the father of five children, she had one child and together they had two more, one of which died at birth in 1950. At the age of 22, she had the responsibility of raising seven children.

Virginia lived all of her life in Vernon County, except for a few years in Kansas City, Mo., while she was married to her second husband, Austin Wilt, and for the last year in Joplin. She was a seamstress and worked at different times at all the clothing factories which were located in Nevada. She loved being outdoors, especially if she could go fishing with her brother.

Survivors include two daughters, Ginnie Burchell, of Richards, and Jane Dean, of Nevada; one step daughter, Helen Elrod, of Tennessee; one step-granddaughter, Dana Lynn Keith, of Joplin, whom she reared as her own child; one brother, Raymond Jenkins and his wife Shirley; two sisters, Velma Phillips and Dorothy Matheny, all of Nevada. She was "Granny" to 18 grandchildren and many great-grandchildren and "Granny-Aunty" to numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews. Virginia was preceded in death by her parents, two husbands; one daughter, three step daughters, Mildred Helums, Dorothy Good and Anne Cochran; one step son, Charles Smith and two step-grandchildren, Joe Smith and Charla Jean Smith; one brother, Cecil Jenkins, and one sister, Margaret Kellerhal.

Funeral services will be held at 1:30 p.m., on Wednesday, March 12, at Ferry Funeral Home, Nevada, with pastor Connie Locke officiating. Interment will follow in Mount Vernon Cemetery, in Walker. Friends may call now and until the hour of service at the funeral home.

Memorials may be given to the charity of the donor's choice, in care of Ferry Funeral Home, Nevada.

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