June 11, 1931 - October 17, 2020
Aiko Bartee, a one-of-a-kind matriarch, passed away peacefully on Saturday, October 17, 2020.
Aiko was preceded in death by her husband, Robert Bartee; her daughter, Patty Bartee; her son-in-law, Larry Shreve; her mother-in-law, Virginia Phillippi; her brothers-in-law, Argil Bartee and Charles Burton; and her sisters-in-law, Margaret Burton, Evelyn Irvin, and Roxie Phillippi.
She is survived by her daughters, Diana Shreve and Gail Canter (Tod); her granddaughters, Patricia Ribler (Daniel), Audra Neagle (Justin), and Leslie Golding; her great-grandsons, Ryan, Luke, and Graham; her brothers-in-law, Doug Bartee (Hannelore), George Phillippi (Tilly), J.D. Phillippi (Nancy), and Verl Irvin; her sister-in-law, Kathleen Bartee; and many nieces and nephews.
Aiko was born in Tokyo, Japan. After marriage, she moved to Wythe County, Virginia, to raise her daughters. She then lived the last three decades in Richmond, constantly surrounded by her loved ones.
Aiko's biggest love was her family. She raised three daughters, helped to raise three granddaughters, and cared for her three great-grandsons. Everyone called her "Gram" because she treated everyone she met like her own children and grandchildren. An avid seamstress, she created outfits for her daughters, keeping them fashionable in their school years. Her passions included cooking, crocheting, knitting, sewing, and gardening. She enjoyed teaching others about her culture, especially by introducing her extended family to Japanese cuisine through her cooking.
Aiko's giving nature and devotion to others exemplified her selfless spirit. She was a tiny woman with a larger-than-life personality. Her unwavering energy and humor endeared everyone to her. She could make anyone laugh. She made everyone feel loved. She was the ultimate caretaker and entertainer. Her smile was priceless, and we know she's smiling down on all of us now.
A visitation will be held at the Grubb Funeral Home in Wytheville on Friday, October 30, 2020, between 6 and 8 p.m. A private graveside service will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Shriners Hospitals for Children
. Expressions of sympathy may be sent to the family at www.grubbfuneralhome.com
Grubb Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.
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Published by SWVA Today on Oct. 24, 2020.