Lydia Margaret Wilkerson Pettus died peacefully in Keysville, Virginia on August 11, 2015 at the age of 82.
Lydia is survived by her husband, Walter Harold Pettus, daughter Jamie Lisa Gay Pettus of Portland, Oregon, and her siblings, Jane Harring of Venice, Florida and George Wilkerson of Mechanicsville, Virginia, as well as her beloved pets, Sport and Precious. She is preceded in death by her son Phillip Dale Pettus as well as her siblings James Wilkerson, William Wilkerson, Charles Wilkerson, Eunice Bridges, Elizabeth Toombs, and Rose Sturgeon.
Lydia was born on January 17, 1933 in Chase City, Virginia to Thomas and Lola Gay Wilkerson. She married Harold in 1951 and they spent the next 64 years together. After moving to Drakes Branch, Lydia began working for the extension office. She later went to work for Burlington Industries and then for the Post Office in Charlotte Court House, Virginia where she enjoyed working as a clerk, until she retired in 1992. Lydia and Harold welcomed two children into their home, and their house was known as the place to go to for Lydia’s fabulous homemade pizza. Her children remember her as firm and responsible yet also full of spunk and often with a mischievous glint in her eye. She took her job as ‘Mom’ very seriously, and was someone her children could always count on, whether she agreed with them or not. She is remembered by her sister Jane as someone who never did anything bad was always ‘prissy’ and the good girl and they had a playful banter throughout their childhood together.
Lydia was a great cook and often spent countless hours preparing just the right meal for her family or for the many church potlucks she went to throughout her life. She was described by a friend as “the best mistress of ceremonies anyone ever saw” and loved planning weddings and events, relishing in arranging flowers, schooling others on the proper etiquette, and doing her best to make the weddings she organized the best memories the bride and groom could hope for. She was always involved in her community, and often volunteered to tutor students, was a lifelong member of the Drakes Branch Women’s Club, and played bridge, which she was passionate about, all her life. She was an active and dedicated member of Drakes Branch Presbyterian Church, serving as the church treasurer and took on whatever role was needed with perseverance, dedication and generosity.
A funeral is scheduled for Sunday, August 16 at 3:00PM at Drakes Branch Presbyterian Church, with a viewing beforehand at 2:00 PM. All are welcome to attend to celebrate Lydia’s life. The Browning-Duffer Funeral Home in Keysville, VA, is in charge of arrangements.