Virginia's Story

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Virginia Mae Sullivan, 88, of Oskaloosa, died Sunday, September 10, 2017, at the MHP Hospice Serenity House in Oskaloosa. She was born June 15, 1929, to Harold G. and Imogene (Smith) Selk in Rockford, Illinios. When Virginia was one-year old she moved with her family to Oskaloosa. She attended Lincoln Elementary and graduated from Oskaloosa High School with the class of 1947. While in school she was involved in Orchestra and the Oskaloosa Municipal Band. Following graduation, she moved to Kansas City and was trained by United Airlines as a Teletype Operator. Following training she worked in the Chicago, Atlanta and Denver Airports. In 1950, she returned to Oskaloosa. On September 30, 1950, she was united in marriage to Gerald Jerry Sullivan at St. Marys Catholic Church in Oskaloosa. To this union six children were born, Steve, Patti, Mark, Kerry, Becky, and Andy. She lived in the Oskaloosa area most of her life. She worked at the A&W from 1964-1966, then from 1966-1971 she worked in the Student Union at William Penn College. In 1971, she started taking classes at Indian Hills Community College to become a Registered Nurse. She earned her nursing pin in 1973, and immediately went to work at the V.A. in Knoxville. She later worked at the Ottumwa Regional Hospital, St. Josephs Hospital in Ottumwa and the Mahaska Hospital in Oskaloosa. She spent her final years of nursing working as a traveling nurse in Texas, Florida, and Oklahoma. It was always a dream for Virginia to open her own tea room. When she retired from nursing she made that dream a reality. She owned and operated the Village Tea Room in What Cheer for eight years. She was a member of St. Marys Catholic Church in Oskaloosa, she was a former member of the St. Marys Catholic Church in Eddyville where she was active with the Altar and Rosary Society. She was also a member of the Pythian Sisters and the Red Hat Society. Virginia gave selflessly of her time and talents to many organizations in Mahaska County including, 4-H, the Eddyville Library, and Diamond Shelter of Oskaloosa. She delighted in spending time with her family.
Her family includes her husband of nearly 67 years, Gerald Jerry Sullivan of Oskaloosa; six children, Steven Sullivan of Des Moines, Patti (Tom) Friend of Iowa Falls, Mark (Mary Jane) Sullivan of Rose Hill, Kerry (Doug) Royer of Perry, Iowa, Becky (Chris) Bechtel of Fort Mohave Valley, Arizona, and Andy Sullivan of Oskaloosa; seven grandchildren, Vincent Sullivan, Michelle Royer, Mary Royer, Gina Friend, Julianne Friend, Tommy Friend, and Adriana Urbatsch; seven great grandchildren; two brothers, Joseph (Arla Jean) Selk of Marshalltown and Gary (Andrea) Selk of Eau Claire, Wisconsin.
Virginia was preceded in death by her parents, and a brother, David Selk.
Mass of the Christian Burial will be held Thursday, September 14, 2017, at 10:30 a.m. in the St. Marys Catholic Church in Oskaloosa with Reverend John Spiegel officiating. Burial will be in the Henness Cemetery southwest of Oskaloosa. The Bates Funeral Chapel is in charge of the arrangements. Visitation will begin Wednesday after 11 a.m. in the Bates Funeral Chapel in Oskaloosa. At 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday the Rosary will be prayed. Visitation with the family present will follow from 5:00 p.m. until 7 p.m. At 7:00 there will be a Christian Vigil Service held at the Funeral Home. Memorials may be made to the MHP Hospice Serenity House.
Published on September 11, 2017
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