Vesta W. Van Metre

Vesta Waneta Butler Van Metre died Wednesday, Feb. 18, 2009, at her home.

She was born April 7, 1917, the daughter of the late Anna Grandstaff Butler and Oscar Philip Butler.

She was a graduate of Martinsburg High School, class of 1935. She was a gifted homemaker and married to Issac D. Van Metre Jr., her beloved husband for 64 years.

She was a former Girl Scout leader, former member of the Van Clevesville Homemakers Club and a member of the Martinsburg Racquette Club. She was a member of the Martinsburg High School Alumni Association and served as president 1977-78.

Her hobbies were growing and arranging flowers. As a master judge, she judged many flower shows and won many ribbons. She was a member since 1957 of the Norborne Garden Club, serving as president twice. Also, she served as executive secretary of the WV Federated Garden Clubs; for eight years, she served as chairman of the State Flower Show Schools and chairman of South Atlantic Regional Indoor Gardening Committee. She was instrumental in establishing the Blue Star Highway System in West Virginia. She was state chairman of the WV Federated Garden Clubs and served on several other state committees as chairman. She represented West Virginia at the Floral Extravaganza at the National Botanical Garden in Washington, D. C., exhibiting a floral design and horticulture specimen. Each state was represented at this event.

She was a member of Winchester Avenue Christian Church for 75 years and served as deaconess; her mother was a charter member of the church. She was an honorary trustee of Mt. Zion Baptist Church, which adjoins the Van Metre home.

She and her husband enjoyed traveling and traveled extensively. She was a lover of animals - especially Pomeranians, which, at one time, she bred and raised. She was especially fond of her beloved "Foncia," who was devoted to her.

She is survived by nephews, Dennis M. Butts and James M. Van Metre IV; twin nieces, Ann Bergdoll Nickerson and Blanch Bergdoll Brady; nieces, Julie Tate and Dotty Van Metre; great-nephew Christopher R. Butts; and several other great-nephews and great-nieces; as well as a sister-in-law, Wilda B.Van Metre.

Many other close relatives are deceased: her niece, Sandra Van Metre Judy; a great-niece, Vicki Marr; a nephew, Dalton R. Butts; and sister, Odessa Butler Butts. Also deceased are sisters-in-law, Katherine Van Metre, Bessie Van Metre Bergdoll Diffenderfer; and brother-in-law, James M. Van Metre III.

She leaves her two devoted caretakers, Hallie (Esther) Johnson and Mady (Madeline) Campbell.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m, Monday, Feb. 23, 2009, at Winchester Avenue Christian Church with the Rev. Curtis Wheeler officiating. Interment will be in the Van Metre Family Cemetery beside her husband.

Pallbearers are Tim Smith, Chris Butts, James H. Van Metre IV, Bill Butler, Bradley Butler, Carroll D. Butler and Keith Voegler.

Honorary bearers are Philip Nickerson Sr., Sam Brady III, Fred Hess, Donald Sours, Jessie Marr, Dr. C. Vincent Townsend, Donald "Doc" Masters, Jerry Judy, Philip Nickerson and David Judy.

The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday at Brown Funeral Home and from 10 to 11 a.m. Monday at the church.

Contributions, in lieu of flowers, may be made to Winchester Avenue Christian Church, 400 Winchester Avenue, Martinsburg WV 25401; Berkeley County Humane Society, 554 Charles Town Road, Martinsburg WV 25405; Hospice of the Panhandle, 122 Waverly Ct., Martinsburg, WV 25402; or to a charity of one's choice.

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