Linda Virshup Barten, 64, of Conway, Mass., died Nov. 6, 2013. Linda died peacefully, surrounded by family and friends, after a long illness. Cherished wife of Alfred Barten, they were devotedly in love for 44 years and rarely spent a night apart. Adored sister, protector and guide of Lauren Virshup, and beloved sister-in-heart of Lauren's husband Jeffrey Kaplan of Brentwood, Tenn. Loving daughter of the late Dr. Milton and Mickey Virshup, formerly of Kings Point, New York.
A Conway resident for more than 20 years, she was an advocate for the local community and served as treasurer and board member of the Conway Historical Society.
Linda was a pianist and graceful ballet dancer from childhood on, and was informally dubbed "Queen of the Florence Community Band" for her many volunteer efforts. For 33 years, she was co-owner with her husband of Orion Designs, publisher and distributor of art notes appreciated for their messages of faith and inspiration.
Linda was herself a source of inspiration and joy to her wide community of friends. She was loved by all who knew her for her kindness and generosity of spirit. An intuitive and unwaveringly loyal friend, Linda never had a harsh word for anyone. Her smiling face and compassionate heart will stay with us all forever.
Linda held a special affinity for dolphins; donations may be made in her memory to Whale and Dolphin Conservation, www.wdcs-na.org.
Private burial; a celebration of Linda's life will be held in the near future.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Wrisley Funeral Home, South Deerfield.