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Virginia Houseknecht

Virginia Houseknecht

Monday, May 3rd, 1948 - Sunday, May 24th, 2020
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Virginia G. Houseknecht

Age 72, of Ithaca, formerly of Watkins Glen, passed away peacefully, following a brief illness, on Sunday, May 24, 2020.

She is predeceased by her husband of 41 years, Lee N. Houseknecht, and parents Dr. Charles and Sara Gundlach of Springfield, VA. She is survived by daughter, Ashley Houseknecht (Mitchell Munson) of King Ferry, NY; brother, Tim (Hunter) Gundlach of Richmond, VA; sister, Heidi Gundlach (Stephen Di Giulian) of Arlington, VA; niece, Sarah Gundlach (Whitney) Williamson of Richmond, VA; nephew Michael (Lauren) Gundlach of Richmond, VA, three great-nephews and several first and second cousins.
Virginia was a graduate of Penn State University and Cornell University. She retired in 2005 after serving as a Cornell Cooperative Extension Agent for 35 years. As the leader of the Family and Consumer Sciences program of Schuyler County, she touched countless lives with programs ranging from nutrition and food safety to budgeting and parenting. Virginia was truly passionate about her work, and loved her coworkers and community.

In retirement, Virginia continued with her spirit of volunteerism and community activism by founding the Southern Tier Parkinson Support Group. For her work, she was honored in 2012 with a New York State Woman of Distinction Award from the New York State Senate. During retirement, she also became a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Watkins Glen. Virginia found strength in their Sunday services.

For the past three years, Virginia resided at Bridges of Cornell Heights in Ithaca, NY. While she certainly missed living in Watkins Glen, she did develop many new relationships and community ties.

A Celebration of Virginia’s Life will be celebrated at a later date.

Memorial donations in lieu of flowers: Southern Tier Parkinson Support Group or National Parkinson Foundation of Greater Rochester. Expressions of condolences may be left in her obituary at www.RoyceChedzoy.com. Arrangements by Royce-Chedzoy Funeral Home, Watkins Glen.

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Hunter, Tim, Sarah, Whit, Lauren and Michael and The IBM FSI Team sent flowers to the family of Virginia Houseknecht.
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Eleanor Liebson

Posted at 10:06am
I remember Virginia always smiling. She was generous to host a yoga class that I taught at her new home in Watkins Glen for a small group of wonderful women. Later after she moved to Ithaca, she attended the medical therapeutic yoga class that I taught at Rasa Spa. She was a very courageous and kind person. Thank you Ginny, you will be missed.
Eleanor Liebson
Occupational Therapist

Robin Travis

Posted at 10:43am
Ginny and I were CCE colleagues and friends for nearly 45 years. Ginny's daughter, Ashley and my son, Seth were only 2 days apart so Ginny and I often talked about our kids when we were together. Ginny and my brother Peter also fought the same battle with Parkinson's, giving us even more in common. My husband , Lester and I hosted Ginny in Florida and stayed in touch on a regular basis. We will miss Ginny's bright smile, endless energy and dogged determination but we know that she has found eternal peace. We will look forward to celebrating her life when the time is right. God Bless!
Robin and Lester Travis


Heartfelt Sympathies Store

Posted at 07:34pm
Ashley & Mitch, sending love. Your mama was so sweet and hilarious throughout our high school experience. Wishing you a peaceful heart.
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Nancy Potter

Posted at 11:05pm
A tree memorial is a testament to Ginny's life-giving spirit and love of nature. With gratitude for her friendship and sympathy for her family.
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A memorial tree was planted in the memory of Virginia Houseknecht — Plant a Tree Now

nancy potter

Posted at 10:57pm
Ginny was an amazing colleague and educator, a seeker of knowledge and wisdom, a heart-filled friend who strived to comfort and support others. Her enthusiasm infused every encounter during our professional roles in Cornell Cooperative Extension in our respective counties and then as a dear friend when she moved to Ithaca.

Ginny was a 'take charge' person and tapped her will-power, courage, and skills to live with dignity while coping with the challenges of Parkinson’s Disease. Her spirit and tenacity will always be remembered. My heart goes out to all who Ginny loved so dearly!

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