CARPENTER, Virginia Lee Schaaf, 84, born June 30, 1938, let her soul free and passed on June 19, 2023 (Juneteenth) after a long battle with breast cancer. Her family called her Virginia Lee or Ginny, but she thought of herself as Gina.
She is predeceased by her beloved parents Herbert Linwood Schaaf, Jr. and Ethel Louise Schaaf (nee Lipscombe), and her brother Herbert Linwood Schaaf, III. She is survived by her husband of 40 years Jerry Carpenter, her sister Martha Mokarry (Wade), as well as her two children, Karen “Kirana” Lee Stover of Sant Pere de Ribes, Spain, and Richard Barron Franklin, Jr. (Jennifer) of San Diego, CA. She leaves behind her treasured grandchildren Nicholas Franklin, Noah Coll, and Laura Franklin, five cherished children of Jerry: Naomi Carpenter, Brenda Mathews, Linda Strong, Jerry Meade Carpenter, and Larissa Carpenter, as well as two nephews Glenn Wickman, and Mark Wickman and dear first and second cousins.
Gina’s spiritual faith grew at home and at the First Presbyterian Church in Hopewell, VA. Graduating from Hopewell High School in 1956, and Madison College (JMU) in 1960 with a B.S. in Literature, she went on to share her love of literature and composition with students at Douglas Freeman High School as well as Our Lady of Lourdes Elementary School. Following a brief stint at The Computer Company, Gina started a second career at the VA Department of Taxation where she worked until her retirement.
An active member of her community in the northside of Richmond, Gina worked with other interested parents to establish the Richmond Neighborhood Soccer Association in 1979. Her dedication to the preservation of arts, crafts and handiworks is revealed in the many contributions she made to Meadow Farm at Crump Park, Maymont, and Valentine Museum. Her delicate hand sewing and attention to detail was honored many times with blue ribbons for original designs at the VA State Fair. In 2000 she suggested a new category- button crafts- in the Creative Arts Competition, which she won!
Neighbors and their pets will miss seeing her on daily walks, and loved ones will remember her through the thoughtful letters and personalized poems and essays she wrote for them.
For her husband Jerry, what is most important is that she knew that she was loved. He feels blessed by their many years together.
To honor her memory, consider a donation to one of the museums mentioned above.