LEXINGTON, Ky. - Josephine (Jo) Sampson Holland Hodgetts, beloved wife of the late Edward Richard Hodgetts, Sr., passed away on January 13th with her son and daughter by her side. Jo was born in 1920, the year women in the U.S. won the right to vote, to William and Ida Belle Holland of Lexington. She was the ninth of ten children and the last remaining of her brothers and sisters. She and Eddy married in May of 1940. Their partnership continued for 66 years, until his passing in 2006.
Mother to E. Richard Hodgetts, Jr., of Madison, GA,( Pat); to Susan Holland Hodgetts Stempel of Lexington, (John); grandmother to Hunt Hodgetts, Alix Parson (Joe), Holly Rowland, and Darby Valego (Brent), all of the Atlanta area; to Jill Stempel (Ben Richardson) of New York; and Amy Stempel (Param Bedi) of Bangalore, India, Jo also leaves six much loved great grandchildren--Noah and Seth Parson, Olivia Lenius, Matthew and Helen Hodgetts, Ashlyn Rowland, Mia Valego, and Elodie Josephine Richardson--all who knew her as their Gigi. In addition, she leaves a number of greatly loved cousins, nieces and nephews as well as daughter-in-law Yvonne Hopkins, and sister-in-law Mary Jo Holland.
Jo was known for her sense of fashion. She modeled at numerous fashion shows in Lexington and served as coordinator of style shows for Embry’s for several years. She was office manager for the Electric League for twenty years. At the Electric League she established a retirement program, a benefit that had not previously been offered to employees. Earlier, in the 50s, she was secretary to the then Treasurer of Lexington, Bill Wheeler, and later to the then Lexington County Attorney, Charles Wylie. Never idle and always a competitor, she began playing tennis in her 50s and was an avid player into her 80s. She also enjoyed bridge for most of her life She and Eddy participated in an active social life with their many friends in Lexington as members of, numerous clubs and groups, including the Lexington Country Club and the Lexington Cotillion Club. They traveled nationally and internationally, but particularly between Lexington and Venice, FLA. After Eddy’s retirement, they had a second home in Venice and lived there in the winters. With a strong circle of friends, they enjoyed traveling with other couples and had some wonderful trips with them. A member of Second Presbyterian Church for over 55 years, Jo was active in the Lexington Women’s Club as a young mother, served as a volunteer Gray Lady at the Veterans Hospital on Leestown Road, delivered Meals on Wheels with Eddy, and was always ready to support her children, Dick and Susan, in their endeavors at school and later in their adult lives. After Eddy’s passing, she moved to Mayfair Village Apartments where she was with many of her Lexington friends and made new ones too. Eventually she moved to The Breckinridge where she was supported and cared for by a tender and loving staff.
The family wishes to thank all of those who have put so much effort and care into making her last years comfortable ones and enabling her to maintain as much independence as possible. In particular, her dear friend Vivian Weil, was a constant to her and a touchstone for her.
The family also gives deep thanks and gratitude to the wonderful staff at The Breckinridge. These angels provided her with a lovely and loving community and home. Their kindnesses, patience, tenderness and understanding were a tremendous comfort to Jo and to her family throughout the past two years.
Hospice of the Bluegrass staff was also vital to her in her last months. They provided critical support and care of her and comfort to the family, much as they had when Eddy passed in 2006.
Visitation will be on January 25th at Kerr Brothers Funeral Home, 463 East Main from 1-3. Burial services will follow at The Lexington Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, a contribution to one of her favorite charities is suggested--Hospice of the Bluegrass, 2312 Alexandria Drive, Lexington, 40504; or God’s Pantry of Lexington, 1685 Jaggie Fox Way, Lexington, Ky 40511.
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