GRETNA, Va. Glenna Rose Tillotson Lingafelt, age 82, of Gretna, went to be with her Lord on Monday, September 17, 2018, at her home, after a five year battle with cancer. Glenna was born on August 9, 1936, at Buffalo Junction, Va. to Lurie Chafus Tillotson and Hallie Hite Tillotson. Glenna was preceded in death by her husband, Charles Richard Lingafelt; her brother, Donald G. Tillotson; and her sister-in-law, Shirley Gupton Tillotson. Glenna grew up on a farm in Mecklenburg County and graduated from Clarksville High School at age 16. She graduated from Averett College in May 1955 and did clerical work for Dan River Mills until June 1956. On August 14, 1955, she married Charles Richard Lingafelt at Second Baptist Church, Danville, Va. and they enjoyed 59 years of immense love and devotion, adventure and hardship, teamwork and companionship until Charles' unexpected death in 2015. Glenna and Charles moved to Gretna in June 1956, where Charles helped build WMNA Radio Station and Glenna worked at WMNA for a year. In August 1957, she began teaching sixth grade at Gretna High School. In 1959, she left teaching when their son, Charles Steven, was born. She was blessed with a second son, Phillip Richard, three years later. From 1959 to 1967 Glenna took a number of classes at Danville Community College. In September 1967, she entered Lynchburg College as a full-time student to complete her Bachelors degree in Education, graduating in August 1968. She taught third grade at Gretna Elementary School from 1968 to 1974. For the next three years, she was a reading and math resource teacher in Pittsylvania County. In August 1977, she returned to Gretna Elementary School as a certified librarian. In May 1978, she completed a Master of Education degree at Lynchburg College. After 14 years as librarian at Gretna Elementary, Gretna Middle School and John L. Hurt Elementary School, she retired in June 1992, having served 26 years in public education. In 1994, Glenna ran for and was elected to Gretna Town Council. Beginning in 1998, she was seven times elected mayor of Gretna- serving 14 years. Glenna personified the word "Public Servant". She was a dedicated leader who strove to make the best decisions possible for her beloved town. She was always thoughtful of others; although her Christian virtues guided her actions, she would sometimes agonize over tough situations as she worked out how to move forward. Over the years, Glenna worked with others to obtain more than 10 million dollars of grants touching all of Gretna's citizens, including 3.6 million dollars for water and sewer improvements, 2.7 million dollars for neighborhood improvements and home refurbishment, 1.9 million dollars for downtown revitalization, 1.5 million dollars for industrial development (jobs), and a quarter of a million dollars for public safety. In 2018, just prior to her death, the road to the Gretna Industrial Park was renamed Lingafelt Drive in her honor. Glenna was a member of Kappa Delta Pi - Lynchburg College and Delta Kappa Gamma - Pittsylvania County. The Gretna Merchants Association named her Citizen of the Year for 2001. Averett University presented her with the Mary Jo Davis Outstanding Alumni Award in 2002 and University of Lynchburg presented her with a Distinguished Alumni Award in 2017. Through the years, Glenna was active in Gretna First Baptist Church including Sunday School teacher, Girls-in-Action (GA) leader, Baptist Training Union, Mission Friends leader, Vacation Bible School, Mid-week Worship Services, Women's Missionary Union (WMU), Deacon, and various committees. Glenna loved to travel with her husband and eventually visited all 50 states, South America and Europe. Glenna was able to be a wonderful mother, continue her education, work, be active in her church, participate and lead in public office, and many other activities because of the support and encouragement from Charles, her husband. They were in love from their first blind date and through the years their support of and devotion to each only increased. Her family and friends are happy they are now reunited again. But Glenna's most important accomplishment was the creation of a loving supportive home, the co-instilling of her and Charles' values and principles in their children, and the working out of their faith for their children. In a very real sense, Steven and Phillip owe who they are to Glenna and Charles; they feel blessed beyond measure. Glenna is survived by two sons, Charles Steven Lingafelt and wife, Patti, of Durham, N.C. and Phillip Richard Lingafelt of Roanoke, Va.; two grandchildren, Charles Steven Lingafelt Jr. of Laurel, Md., and Hannah Hope Lingafelt of Asheville, N.C.; one brother, Irvin Tillotson of Buffalo Junction, Va.; sister-in-law, Cornelia P. Tillotson of Richmond, Va.; sister-in-law, Wanda Orders and husband, Rod, of Morganton, N.C.; brother-in-law, David Lingafelt and wife, Janet, of Newton, N.C.; nieces and nephews, Susan T. Light, Johnnie Tillotson and wife, Sam, David Tillotson, Elizabeth Lingafelt, Jason Orders and wife, Amy, and Karrah Orders Long and husband, Heath; and great-nieces and nephews, Parker and Caidan Orders, and Colby, Landan and McKenli Long, and Heath Light and wife, Danielle. The family would like to thank her many doctors and health care professionals, especially Dr. Duffer, Dr. Secord and Nurse Charlotte for their wisdom and caring, Chappie Brown, her pharmacist, and her caregivers, Dale Matherly, Debbie Upshaw, Felecia Oakley, Kim Adkins, Myrna Richardson, and Nancy Shannon, for extending their hearts, with grace and kindness, in caring for Glenna in countless ways. They protected and cared for Glenna as if she were their own mother. They greatly enriched our lives and their strength and compassion will be long remembered. Funeral services will be conducted 2 p.m. on Sunday, September 23, 2018, at the First Baptist Church of Gretna by the Rev. Dr. Roy N. Ford Jr. Burial will follow in Carl O. Moran Memorial Garden. The family will receive friends from 7 until 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, September 22, 2018, at Colbert-Moran Funeral Home, Gretna and other times will be at the residence on Saturday, September 22, 2018. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made to the First Baptist Church of Gretna, P.O. Box 339, Gretna, VA 24557. Colbert-Moran Funeral Home, Gretna is assisting the family. Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting www.colbertmoran.com.

Load entries