Virginia Shaw Warren, 89, retired Colonial Williamsburg tour guide

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Virginia Shaw Warren
Virginia Shaw Warren

Virginia Shaw Warren, 89, died as graciously as she lived on Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2016. Born in Wilmington, NC on July 30, 1927, Virginia attended Westhampton College (now University of Richmond), where she met her future husband, William H. Warren (Bill). Together they raised five children during Bill’s career progression that led them from Richmond to Roanoke Rapids, NC, Ashland, VA, West Lafayette, IN, and finally to Williamsburg in 1971.

While Bill taught at the Business School at the College of William and Mary, Virginia began a career as a tour guide at Colonial Williamsburg. Here she nourished her love for both history and people, entertaining legions of school groups, tourists and dignitaries with a walking dialog of Colonial Williamsburg that brought America’s infancy to life.

After Virginia retired from Colonial Williamsburg, she volunteered at Historic Jamestown, was active as a master gardener, and served for Meals on Wheels.

Virginia considered her five children among her greatest accomplishments. She beguiled people with her kindness, and was often able to garner the life history from complete strangers within minutes. She also had a knack for telling jokes that was both charming and disarming. Her love of family and the people around her fueled her to live graciously, even through the ravages of Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS).

Virginia was predeceased by her husband Bill. She is survived by her five children: Katherine (husband Thomas), Connie (husband Marcel), Suzanne (husband Mike), David (wife Barbara) and John (wife Cheri), as well as 7 grandchildren, and 5 great-grandchildren.

The family extends a special thanks to the nursing staff at Woodhaven (Williamsburg Landing), where Virginia adopted – and was adopted by – dozens of aides, nurses and staff who selflessly guided her with joy and humor to the end of her life.

A celebration of Virginia’s life will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 1 at 2 p.m. at the Williamsburg Baptist Church. A memorial will take place at a later date at Woodhaven.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a donation to the Williamsburg Baptist Church, the ALS Association, or to the charity of their choice.