Veva Ann Anderson Purvis of 1106 Mercer-West Middlesex Road, Mercer, died at 8 a.m. Friday, May 17, 2013, in her home. She was 74.
Mrs. Purvis was born Saturday, Jan. 21, 1939, in Mercer Cottage Hospital, the second child of Otto Russell Anderson and Margaret Agnes Mount Anderson.
She grew up on the Anderson family farm in East Lackawannock Township and attended Mercer Area School, graduating in the class of 1956.
On July 1, 1961, she married John “Jack” Ray Purvis in Unity Presbyterian Church, Lackawannock Township. They lived in the New Wilmington area for four years and then moved to the Mercer area.
Tragically, Jack was permanently disabled in 1979. Veva devoted 25 years to caring for him. They built a geodesic dome house on the same site where their house had burned. They enjoyed 43 years of marriage prior to Jack’s death on April 30, 2005.
Early in her life, Veva decided to become a teacher and received a bachelor of science degree in 1960 from Indiana State College, now Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP). She taught first and fifth grades at Mercer East Elementary School and also did substitute teaching.
Veva was president of her senior class and always enjoyed keeping in touch with classmates. She helped plan regular class reunions, chairing the 50-year reunion in 2006. As class president, Veva experienced one of the highlights of her life, placing a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington (Va.) Cemetery on the senior class trip to Washington, D.C.
Veva was a member of Unity Presbyterian. She served as an elder and deacon, but especially enjoyed her work with children in Sunday school, Vacation Bible School and the cradle roll. She was a member of Presbyterian Women and as a youth, was active in Christian Endeavor.
She was a driver for Mercer Meals on Wheels for 37 years.
Veva’s interests were people, family gatherings, singing hymns, ice skating, square dancing and bird watching.
Survivors include: her mother, Margaret Anderson, and a sister, Elaine and her husband Leslie N. Firth, all Mercer; four brothers, Atlee Ralph Anderson and his wife Jan, Hammond, Ind.; Keith Bruce and his wife Carol, Edinburg, Texas; Myron Charles and his wife Lynn, Lynn Haven, Fla.; and Otto Russell Anderson II, New Wilmington; a son, Larry Neil and his wife JonMarie, Portland, Ore.; a daughter, Karen Elaine and her husband William J. Hudson, West Middlesex; two much-loved grandsons, Billy and Graham Hudson, both West Middlesex; and a stepgrandson, Daniel Altig, Portland.
Other survivors include two sisters-in-law, Joyce Purvis, Brunswick, Ohio; and Lou Ann and her husband Harold Dillman, Corydon, Ind.; a brother-in-law, David Purvis and his wife Mary, Monterey, Calif.; and four first cousins.
Veva is also survived by a whole bunch of wonderful nieces and nephews, along with their families.
Preceding Veva in death, in addition to her husband, were her father, in 1982; a 6-month-old sister, Rebecca Ellen, in 1945; two former sisters-in-law; a niece’s husband, Alan Kobren; a great-nephew, Isak Morales; a brother-in-law, Robert Purvis; and a cousin, Leeland W. Mount.
Veva’s family wishes to thank kind neighbors, Bill and Dot Hoagland, who provided a place for the Purvis family to live while rebuilding their house and lives. Thanks are also extended to her church family, neighbors and classmates for their loving, comforting deeds. The prayers, visits, beautiful cards and kind words made her final days happy ones.
Memorial contributions, if desired, may be made to Unity Presbyterian Church Memorial Fund, 1857 Mercer-West Middlesex Road, or Brandy Springs Park, 233 New Wilmington Road, both Mercer, PA 16137; or Sharon Regional Hospice and Palliative Care, 2320 Highland Road, Hermitage, PA 16148.
Mrs. John “Jack” Ray (Veva Ann Anderson), 74, of 1106 Mercer-West Middlesex Road, Mercer.
Calling hours: 4 to 7 p.m. Monday (5-20-13) in SMITH FUNERAL HOME, 310 W. Neshannock Ave., New Wilmington, and 11 a.m. to time of service Tuesday (5-21-13) in Unity Presbyterian Church, 1857 Mercer-West Middlesex Road, Lackawannock Township.
Service: Funeral service at noon Tuesday in the church with the Rev. David Wayne Hunt, pastor, officiating.
Interment: Mount Washington Cemetery, Jefferson Township.