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A Life Lived: Virginia Hardin lived a long life of servanthood

BY ROZELLA HARDIN
Editorial Director
rozella.hardin@elizabethton.com
Virginia Hardin was 90 years old when she died June 16. It was a long, blessed life packed full of humility and good works. It wasn’t an always easy life, but it had its rewards.
She was born Virginia Allean Hall on Christmas Day in 1930. When she was 16 years old she quit school to help her family, fudged a little on her age and when to work at the S.H. Kress store downtown. “That was probably the only lie she ever told,” said her son, Tony.
However, some years later after she was married and had children, she completed her GED courses and received her high school diploma. “She wanted her children to know that an education was important and she encouraged us to get a good education,” Tony said.
Virginia was married to Frankie Hardin, and was the mother of four children, two of whom preceded her in death — Sandra and Sherry. In addition to Tony, she is survived by a daughter, Lisa Lowe.
Virginia was caregiver to her two daughters, Sherry suffered from rheumatoid arthritis as does Lisa. “My Mom was something. How she did all that she did, I will never know. She was a very good mother and loved her family so deeply. She was a very thoughtful person, very kind, always wanted to help others,” said Lisa.
In addition to Kress, Virginia also worked at Britts, and TG&Y where she was manager of the fabric department. “She enjoyed working at TG&Y and was so disappointed when they closed,” said Lisa.
In addition to her work outside the home, Virginia was known as a good cook. She enjoyed cooking for Sunday dinner and holiday meals. “She was known for her chicken casserole as well as some other recipes, including her lasagna and turkey and dressing,” Lisa shared.
She also enjoyed quilting and for a long time was a member of the Unaka Quilting Club. Tuesday was her day for quilting, so she made no appointments for that day. In addition to quilts made for her family, she made a number of quilts, especially lap quilts, for nursing home residents. “She was very good at sewing and quilting, and crafts, as well. She made a lot of her Christmas decorations,” Lisa said.
Virginia’s greater love was for the Lord and her church at Carter Christian. “She knew her Bible and enjoyed witnessing to people,” said Tony. He shared that his mother while in the nursing home had his sister write Bible verses on small pieces of paper. She in turn gave the copies to her caregivers and residents at Christian Care in Bristol as her means of witnessing. “She wanted everyone to know the Lord as she did,” he said.
Virginia was very active in the church’s ministries, and for many years delivered meals through the church’s meal ministry.
“Mom had a ton of books. She was an avid reader. In addition to her devotion books, she enjoyed westerns, which she also watched on TV. But, she would read almost anything. She learned much from her reading, especially the Bible. She was very good in Bible trivia,” Lisa shared.
Virginia was blessed with a lot of know-how, and she used it to serve her family and minister to others. “She never let her talents go to waste. She enjoyed giving and serving,” said Lisa.
“Mom was a very beautiful woman in her younger days, and still was even when she became older. But, her true beauty was in her love for others,” shared Lisa.
“She made it through COVID, but in the end, lymphoma got her. We were blessed to have her as long as we did. We were blessed to have her as a mother. She was always there, not only for us, but for her church family and neighbors,” Lisa said.
There were no limits to Virginia Hardin’s love, which was deep and wide. Many were touched by her kindness and generosity and warmed by her smile. What an example she set for those around her.