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2017-8-31

Irene Holt "Miss Hope" Morrison

Irene Holt “Miss Hope” Morrison died Tuesday, August 29, 2017 at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital, Roanoke, VA.

She was born December 21,1926 in Pulaski, VA, the second of five children to the late Randall Clinton Holt and Elsie Ann Hall Holt.

She graduated from high school at the Christiansburg Industrial Institute, Christiansburg, VA in 1945 and attended and graduated Morristown College, Morristown, TN in 1947.  Upon completion of her degree at Morristown, Irene had received a scholarship to study pre-med at Temple University in Philadelphia, PA, with the hopes of one day becoming a doctor. Upon returning to Pulaski, VA, after graduating from Morristown, she found her mother gravely ill and decided to stay in the area to assist in caring for her ailing mother, father and two minor sisters. Her mother died shortly after Irene's return from Morristown.  She was recruited for a position as a teacher, receiving an appointment to the one-room Rich Hill School in Allisonia, VA. At Rich Hill, Irene wasn't much older than many of her students, and was younger than some, but commanded respect from both students and parents alike.  On her first day of instruction, she informed the students that her name was “Miss Holt,” however, the students insisted on calling her “Miss Hope” - to many of whom she was their “Hope.” During her time at Rich Hill she encouraged the parents to petition the School Board to provide a bus for the students so that they could pursue furthering their education beyond Rich Hill.

Irene continued to further her own education by attending  Virginia Union University in Richmond, VA and eventually obtaining her Bachelor's of Science in Education in 1977.  She pursued her degree by attending various colleges in the Summers that included Virginia State University, she was the first African American undergraduate student to enroll at the then Radford College, Radford, VA, and Virginia Tech. She also took continuing education courses at New River Community College, Wytheville Community College and through the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA.

Throughout her career she was certified and taught many grade levels and served as the acting principal at Calfee Training School.  After de-segregation she served as the librarian at Claremont Elementary School and as a computer instructor to the elementary aged children at Claremont.

On June 16, 1950, she eloped and married a friend from high school, George Emmet Morrison, Jr. After nearly 9 and one half years their first child was born and nearly five years after that, they completed their family with the addition of the second and final child. Her family was her pride and her most important accomplishment.

In her early teen years Irene professed her faith in Jesus Christ and joined New Century Methodist Church in Pulaski, VA.  After her marriage she joined Mt. Pleasant Methodist Church in Dublin, VA and was instrumental in the merger of Mt. Pleasant and Dublin Methodist Church into Dublin United Methodist Church on April 19, 1970.

In the three churches she belonged to she was a beloved and active member. From 1970 on at Dublin United Methodist Church she served as a Sunday School Teacher, member of the Council on Ministries, Administrative Board – where she was eventually Chairman, she was a member of the Adult Choir, a member of the Seekers group of the United Methodist Women, Cheerful Adults and helped to establish the church's first Prison Ministry.  Irene was also a Certified Lay Speaker for the United Methodist Church and served as Pulpit Supply for the Wytheville District UMC. She was a member of the Pulaski-Dublin Cluster and was instrumental in organizing area participation for the Annual Revival at Page's Camp Meeting House.

For the Holston Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church Irene served multiple Bishops on the Board of Episcopacy, COSROW (Commission on the Status and Role of Women), Higher Education Committee and as a District Delegate to the Holston Annual Conference.

She and her family worked together in many community organizations, including the GEM City Garden Club – where she served many years as the Club's President, Federated Colored Women's Club, Pulaski County Democrats – serving as President of the Democratic Women's Club for many years and a Delegate to numerous District and State Conventions, Pulaski County Clean Community Council, Church Women United (President), Pulaski County Retired Teachers Organization, Pulaski County NAACP, National, Virginia and Pulaski County Education Associations, Christiansburg Industrial Institute Alumni Association, and the Red Cross of Pulaski County.

She was preceded in death by her husband of nearly 42 years, George E. Morrison, Jr. her parents, Randall C. Holt and Elise A. Hall Holt, two brothers: Randolph Holt (infant) and Cecil E. Holt, one sister Mary D. Holt Davis (Alonzo), and nephew Randall Holt. She was also preceded in death by her parents-in-laws Mr. and Mrs. George E. (Rosa) Morrison, Sr., sisters-in-law Mrs. Charlotte M. Williams, Mrs. Helen M. Hampton (Kenneth), Miss Kathleen C. Morrison, Mrs. Clara M. Booth (William), brothers-in-law Mr. Winslow Morrison and Mr. Nathan J. Sokolow.

She is survived by her children Kathleen Georgianna Morrison and George Emmett Morrison, III, her sister Mrs. Gladys Holt Sokolow and sister-in-law Mrs. Mattie P. M. Holmes, her God-daughter Mrs. Sharon B. Dabney (Trey), and nieces and nephews Jacqueline Moore (Julius III), Kenneth Hampton, Sandra Pittman Dobson (Spouse), Randall Grey (Sherie), Tyrone Holmes (Jackie), Alethiea Williams Taylor, Charlayne Williams Thompkins, Joanna Hampton Claytor, Marcellus Hampton (Laurice), Troy Hampton (Thelma), Emmett Hampton (Edith), Rosalia Williams Davis, Brenda Lewis-Holmes, William Booth, Sharon Booth Dabney (Trey), Edgar J. Claytor, Bateman Davis (Jim), Kenneth Holt, Sandra Holt, Derrick Holt, numerous great-nieces and great-nephews and a host of other relatives and friends to cherish her memory.

The family will greet visitors on Sunday, September 3, 2017, beginning at 1:30 pm before a Celebration of Life Service at 3:00 pm at Dublin United Methodist Church, 424 E. Main Street, Dublin, Virginia. Interment will follow the service at Highland Memory Gardens. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Irene Holt Morrison Scholarship Fund, c/o Dublin United Methodist Church, 424 E. Main Street, Dublin, VA 24084.

Around the World in Three Blocks

Petersburg, August 17, 2017 - Crater Community Hospice (CCH) is offering an evening of dining and strolling in Old Town Petersburg with "Around the World in Three Blocks," a progressive dinner, on Sunday, September 10, 2017.  Proceeds from the event will support CCH's Family Respite Care program.

The evening begins at 4pm at Andrade's International Restaurant with appetizers and spirits.  From there, guests will stroll to Maria's Old Town 21 for dinner.  Following dinner, guests will head to the Petersburg Area Art League (PAAL) for coffee and dessert.  Flutist Iris Schwartz will perform at PAAL.  The evening will include door prizes and a raffle. 

"Once again, Crater Community Hospice looks forward to building community support for our programs by showcasing and supporting the local businesses in our community," says E. Jane Elliott, Chair of the Crater Community Hospice Board of Directors.  Last Spring, the organization hosted a dinner and auction at Farmers Market Restaurant and generated over $13,000.  Last February, the organization partnered with Blue Willow Tea Room and earned 10% return on select purchases.  "It's a win-win-win," says Elliott, "CCH's families will benefit from additional services that this event will support; guests will get to spend an evening enjoying Old Town; and Old Town merchants will get exposure to new patrons." 

The Family Respite Care program was initiated by CCH two years ago, and supports families who are physically and emotionally exhausted from caring 24/7 for their loved ones.  Respite care offers families relief with additional hands-on help with caregiving.  Families use this relief time to address their own health needs, take care of other personal business, or get some uninterrupted rest.  CCH's Family Respite Care program offers up to 24 hours of care to families receiving the organization's hospice services.

Limited tickets are available.  A $65 per person contribution is in part tax-deductible. For tickets, contact CCH Development Director Deborah Williamson at (804) 526-4300 or dwilliamson@cratercommunityhospice.org

Nurse Career Fair Set for September 7th

SOUTH HILL, VA– VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital will be hosting a Nurse Career Fair on Thursday, September 7th from 1:00PM – 7:00PM at the CMH Education Center, located at 125 Buena Vista Circle in South Hill.

As VCU Health CMH grows, so does the need for dedicated nurses.  Nursing opportunities for new and experienced nurses may be available in:  Medical-Surgical, Emergency, Oncology, Surgical Services, Long Term Care, Cardiac Intensive Care and Home Health/Hospice.

VCU Health CMH’s new facility is set to open on November 11, 2017.

To learn more about nursing at VCU Health CMH, or to view and apply for current opportunities, visit vcuhealth.org/careers/start-your-career-search or contact Terri Coker at 434-447-3151, ext. 3471 or terri.coker@vcuhealth.org.

 

At VCU Health CMH, we are building a healthier community, together.

Freeman Community Empowerment Day

The 4th Annual Freeman Community Empowerment Day was held on Saturday, August 19th from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm at the Inspiration Center (formerly Meljo’s), 21391 Governor Harrison Parkway, Freeman, Virginia. WHLQ 105.5 Hot Joy Radio was elated to partner with The Freeman Coalition. WHLQ 105.5 FM’s piece was to provide the community with inspirational music, dance, and new clothing for children K-12. We had some great people assist us with this endeavor.

First, we had performers; Inspired to Dance, Daughters of Zion, The Bowman Family, Minister Naomi Castel, Author Rita Odom Moseley, Mike Alston and more share their gifts of dance and song. We thank them for their awe-inspiring presentations.

Second, we would like to thank Angel’s (Minister Antoinette House donated 200 pieces of clothing), Mayor Harrington, and the staff of WHLQ for donations of new clothing for children from K-12 grades. They went above and beyond what we expected.

Third, we are also grateful to Thompson Hauling, Inc. (flatbed for stage), Joseph Mitchell (25 vacation give-a-way), Ministers Donna Ray and Pate McCoy (financial donation), and Mike Alston for our sound system. And most of all we thank the community for showing up in great numbers. Thanks again to all of you for your support and we look to do it all over again next year.

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