MIDDLESBORO — Virginia V. Huff, lifelong resident of Middlesboro, Kentucky was born on February 19, 1918 to Ida Bales and Creed Fulton Huff, Sr. and died at age 96 on Friday, February 28, 2014 at Appalachian Regional Hospital in Middlesboro.
Her funeral service was held on Thursday, March 6 at First Presbyterian Church with Dr. Phil Majors officiating. Burial followed in the Middlesboro Cemetery.
She was predeceased by her parents, her siblings Gladys, Fulton, Nelson, and Ogden, a niece Sharron Huff Wagoner, and her beloved friend William Luckett.
Virginia is survived by her brother Alvin, his wife Margaret, and their daughter Judy Lucas; her sister-in law Irene (Mrs. Nelson) Huff, their daughter Anne Crockett Huff and her husband Bruce Miller; Ogden's children Virginia Morton Cooper and her husband Morris, and Creed William Huff and his wife Cathryn.
As a lifelong member of Middlesboro First Presbyterian Church, she served in many capacities.
She was her senior class secretary, Middlesboro High School class of 1936, and attended Georgetown College and Lincoln Memorial University.
Virginia was Assistant to Mr. Howard Douglas, Secretary of the Middlesborough Chamber of Commerce, where their work was instrumental in obtaining land for the Cumberland Gap National Historical Park. She became the first secretary of the Park, and has often been recognized for her valuable contributions to its formation. She was the first woman in the Southeast Region to be awarded the Department of the Interior's "Meritorious Service Award", which is the highest award given by the Park Service. She was also awarded "Honorary Historian" for the more than 54 years of service for promoting knowledge and understanding of the area's history.
Always extremely active in her community, she was involved with the League of Women Voters, Park Service Women's Organization, Eastern National Parks and Monument Association, Middlesboro Literacy council, Bell County 4-H Council, Middlesboro Cemetery Company, Bell County Historical Society, and Middlesboro Little Theatre.
She became a lifetime member of the Bell County Chamber of Commerce, and received its "Humanitarian Award". Further, she served as Kentucky BPW treasurer and BPW/Middlesboro president, vice-president and secretary, as well as serving on numerous committees. Her BPW awards include multiple "Woman of the Year" awards and the Emma Ralston Award; and she was recognized for her contributions to the community by the "Celebration of Women" leadership award.
In an interview, she stated, "I've had a good life," and when asked if she had any advice for younger women today, she simply said "go to church, work hard and make friends."
Martha Evans Wiley dedicated her new book, Images of America, The Cumberland Gap National Historical Park: "To Virginia Huff, whose commitment and love for the park have inspired so many."
Shumate Funeral Home was entrusted with all arrangements.
Candle Lighting and Guestbook at www.shumatefuneralhome.com