Virginia Dare Cleary Petty, “Ginger” passed away peacefully in the home of her daughter, after a long, hard battle with cancer. She was diagnosed with lung cancer in August 2021 and died on Friday, January 13, 2023. Ginger was a strong, beautiful woman who was respected, admired and loved by her family and friends.
Ginger was born February 24, 1933 to the late Johnnie and Isabell (Wagner) Cleary and grew up taking care of her brothers and sisters. She met John Petty while attending the former Dublin High School. She graduated from North Harford High in 1950, a member of the first graduating class of that school. She and John were married November 10, 1951.
Their only child, Terry was born in 1955 and only grandchild, MaryBeth Rollins was born in 1979.
Ginger had worked at various jobs from daycare, as secretary at North Harford High School and as secretary at Montgomery Ward. She “retired” to take care of her mother who had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and devoted 10 years of her life to caring for her.
Ginger was devoted to her family members-her husband, parents, daughter, granddaughter as well as her numerous friends.
She was a member of New Bridge Baptist Church in Colora, MD where taught Sunday School for 44 years. She cleaned and cooked for many church events and funerals.
Her daughter, Terry Rollins and her son-in-law, Rodney Rollins, survive Ginger. She is also survived by many family members, in-laws and her sisters: Carrie Perkins and Sheba Smith and brothers: Ben, Harrison, Hoby, Kyle and Bobby Cleary
Ginger was predeceased by John, the love of her life, as well as by her sister, Mary and brothers: Ronnie, Keith and Willard. A piece of her heart never recovered when she lost her precious granddaughter, MaryBeth Rollins who died as a young adult.
Ginger was also an excellent seamstress making many clothes for herself and her daughter. She made curtains and pillows as well as doing alterations. She loved to plant flowers in her yard for others to enjoy. Another very important part of her life was the singing group: Heart and Souls. They performed at nursing homes in Maryland and Pennsylvania as well as at funerals.
The family wants to give special thanks to Pete and Kathy Petty, who have taken such good care of her home. Sharon, her “adopted” daughter and her neighbors who were always there for Ginger. In addition, the wonderful staff of Mary Washington Hospice, Kristen, her nurse, Mary, the social worker and Relba, her special care person and others.
A private graveside service will be held for her family. Memorials and contributions can be made to New Bridge Baptist Church Cemetery Fund, 32 Wyatt Lane Colora, MD 21917.