Virginia Sleap Wilkinson, age 87, died peacefully at her home in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, on Saturday morning, Janumy 7, 2012. Members of her immediate family were with her at the time of her death. She had fought a brave battle with lung cancer over the past year.
Virginia was born in Palatka, Florida, on August 14, 1924, and received her elementmy and high school education at public schools in that city. After graduation from high school, she attended Florida State University (then Florida State College for Women) in Tallahassee, Florida. During World War II she married Michael Kennerly Wilkinson, also of Palatka, on June 18,1944. They had three children.
During World War II, Virginia and her husband lived in various places where he was stationed. When the war ended, they moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts, where her husband was enrolled in graduate school at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. After completion of the graduate program in September, 1950, they moved to Oak Ridge, Tennessee, where her husband was employed on the research staff at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Except for one year when her husband was on a leave of absence to teach at the Georgia Institute of Technology, she and her family remained in Oak Ridge.
Virginia was a vmy loving mother who always put her family first. When her children were young, she taught Sunday School classes at St. Stephens Episcopal Church and participated in many other activities involving her children. She was very much loved by all members of her family and will be severely missed by them.
Virginia participated in a number of social activities in Oak Ridge and made many close friends. All who knew her loved her and will certainly miss her.
Virginia is survived by Michael K. Wilkinson, her husband of sixty-seven years; her children, Robert W. Wilkinson and his wife, Patsy, of Oak Ridge, Tennessee, William M. Wilkinson and his wife, Kathy, of Marietta, Georgia, and Elizabeth W. Sowell and her husband, Gmy, of Alpharetta, Georgia; her grandchildren, Jennifer Heuvelman and her husband, Jim, of Atlanta, Georgia, Michael Wilkinson of Charleston, South Carolina, and Indy Wilkinson and his wife, Mandy, of Chevy Chase, Matyland; her step-grandchildren, Jennifer Wright of Sandy Springs, Georgia, and Randy Gordy and his wife, Heather, of Marietta, Georgia; her great grandchild, Grace Savannah Wilkinson of Chevy Chase, Mmyland; her step-great grandchildren, Holden Wright of Sandy Springs, Georgia, and Aiden Gordy of Marietta, Georgia.
Her body will be cremated and buried in a private ceremony at the Memorial Garden at
St. Stephen's Episcopal Church.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to St. Stephens Episcopal Church, 212 Notth Tulane Avenue, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, 37830; Oak Ridge Family Bible Church, 1978 Oak Ridge Turnpike, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, 37830; and Covenant Hospice, 200 New York Avenue, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, 37830.