GWYNN'S ISLAND - Judy G. Ward, 65, of Gwynn's Island, died June 20, 2010, in Riverside Regional Medical Center, Newport News.
She is survived by a brother, Bud Ward; a sister, Cathryn Drummond (Jim); a niece, Charlene Haywood (C.C.); nephews, John Drummond (Andrea), Ryan Ward, Alan Ward and Warner Ward; a sister-in-law, Shirley Ward, and an honorary sister, Lindy Hatch.
She was predeceased by her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Charles E. Ward; brother, Charles R. Ward; and sister, "Dinnie" Ward.
She was an active member of Gwynn's Island Baptist Church, where she taught Sunday School and sang in the choir.
Judy graduated from Lynchburg College in 1967 and taught science in the Gloucester County School System. She was employed for a while at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science but decided to make music a full-time profession. She performed locally in the early 1960s and went on stage with George Britt cutting a record in 1969. She entertained U.S. troops in Cuba and Iceland. She also performed and made albums with David Shuber.
In 1976, Judy composed music and lyrics for a play "Crickets on a Hill" which was performed as part of the observance of the Bicentennial.
In 1978 she took first place in a national hymn writing contest sponsored by the Southern Baptist Convention and Broadman Publishing Company with the composition "He is Lord." She later wrote a cantata of the same name, and composed other original plays and cantatas for her church. Active in the Gwynn's Island Civic League, she was named its Gwynn's Island Outstanding Citizen in 1999, and was cited by Cricket Hill Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution, for community service in 2003.
In 1988 Judy became a housepainter. In 2000 she was employed by the Mathews County Sheriff's Office as a dispatcher. She was also a realtor for Century 21 Liberty Realty Inc., Gloucester.
A dedicated member of the Mathews Volunteer Rescue Squad, she originated the idea of "Camp Rescue," now a summer staple in the county, teaching the basics of emergency response to youth. She was Virginia's EMT of the year in 1992 and a runner-up for the national EMT of the year award in 1993. She was Squad Person of the year three times for the local squad. Judy was instrumental in the formation of the Mathews Volunteer Rescue Squad Auxiliary and the dive team.
In 2009, with her friend and longtime rescue co-worker Clarence Minters, she was grand marshal of the Mathews Christmas Parade.
Visitation for friends will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday, June 24, in Gwynn's Island Baptist Church. A funeral will be conducted by the Rev. David Patton, pastor, at 11 a.m. Friday, June 25, in Gwynn's Island Baptist Church.
Memorials may be sent to the Mathews Volunteer Rescue Squad, P.O. Box 723, Mathews, VA 23109 or Gwynn's Island Baptist Church Music Fund, P.O. Box 26, Gwynn, VA 23066.
Foster-Faulkner Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements. View and post condolences on our online guestbook at dailypress.com/guestbooks.