Virginia Helms Russell

Published 10:55 pm Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Reverend Virginia Helms Russell died on December 10, 2012 in Asheville, NC. She was raised in Smithfield, NC, and most recently resided in rural Polk County.

Ordained a Presbyterian (USA) minister in 1987, she served with her husband as co-pastor of McConnellsburg United Presbyterian, McConnellsburg, Pa. and Yorkminster Presbyterian, Yorktown, Va.; as parish associate of Waldensian Presbyterian, Valdese, N.C., and First Presbyterian, Hampton, Va.; and most recently as interim pastor of West Avenue Presbyterian, Gastonia, N.C.

Jenny, as she was known, graduated from Duke University and Union Theological Seminary in Virginia. Infused with a positive spirit, she touched the lives of many though her ministry, friendship and hospitality.

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Survivors include her husband of 26 years, the Reverend T. Feild Russell; daughters, Kathryn Helms Russell and Anna Feild Russell; parents, Earl and Dorothy Helms of Smithfield, NC; sister, Janis Helms of Raleigh, NC; and many in-laws, nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, December 15, at Waldensian Presbyterian Church in Valdese, N.C.

A reception will follow at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to any of the churches Jenny so faithfully served, or to an animal welfare agency.