Virginia Belle Lewis, age 86, lost her battle with non-small cell lung cancer on Monday June 10, 2019.
Virginia was born in Maywood, Missouri on March 9, 1933, to George Wilbur (G.W.) and Rilla Mae (Bondurant) Nesbitt. In the spring of 1938, the family moved to Springfield, Oregon where they lived until returning to a farm near Monticello, Missouri in January 1946. Following graduation in 1951 from Lewistown High School, she entered nurse's training at Blessing Hospital in Quincy, Illinois. In 1954, upon successfully completing her state board exams she became a licensed registered professional nurse. Additionally, she attended Culver Stockton College in Canton, Missouri and in 1958 received a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology. In 1959, to enhance her nursing qualifications, she completed a post graduate program in Operating Room Management at the University of Chicago.
On July 31, 1960, she was united in marriage to Marvin Lewis at the First Baptist Church in St. Joseph, Missouri. They lived on a farm near Ruskin, Nebraska until April 2014 when they moved to the Good Samaritan Village in Hastings, Nebraska.
Initially, Virginia worked as the school nurse in Superior, Nebraska. In 1962, she began her 46 year career at Brodstone Memorial Hospital where she worked in numerous roles. In addition to her work as a floor nurse, she was the Director of Nurses for a number of years and when the need arose, she became the interim administrator of the hospital. However, her absolute favorite role was that of the surgical nurse. In 1991, she was Employee of the Year.
As a newlywed, Virginia was an inexperienced cook. Over the years through trial and error, she became a good cook and enjoyed preparing delicious meals for her family and experimenting with new recipes. She was especially known for her rye bread and coconut cream pies. At the Bethany Lutheran Church fundraising Lord's Acre Sale, her coconut cream pies were a popular, highly anticipated item. Virginia also enjoyed spending time crocheting and quilting. Over the years she crocheted many prayer shawls and beautiful afghans. It was important to her that each of her grandchildren receive a quilt created specifically for them upon their high school graduation.
Virginia was a member of Bethany Lutheran Church in Ruskin and selflessly volunteered many hours for whatever jobs needed to be done. Upon moving to Hastings, she and Marvin became associate members of St. Paul Lutheran Church where she continued to volunteer as she was able.
Predeceasing her are her parents; and brother, Hubert Nesbitt.
Virginia is survived by her husband of nearly 59 years, Marvin; her three children, Letha Kunkel and her husband Tom of Avon, Connecticut, Jerald (Jerry) Lewis and his wife JoAnn of West Point, Nebraska, and Neal Lewis and his wife Marcy of Zionsville, Indiana; six grandchildren, Robert Kunkel of Chicago, Illinois, Grace Kunkel of Boston, Massachusetts, Laura Kunkel of Avon, Connecticut, Erica Lewis of Lincoln, Nebraska, and Alexandra and Gabriella Lewis of Zionsville, Indiana.
A celebration of her life will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, June 14 at the Good Samaritan Village Chapel, 931 East F Street, Hastings. A graveside service will be held at 2 p.m. at Spring Creek Cemetery in Ruskin. In lieu of flowers, donations in Virginia's memory may be made to the Spring Creek Cemetery Foundation, P.O. Box 21, Ruskin, NE 68974 or Brodstone Memorial Hospital, 520 E. 10th St., Superior, NE 68978.