Barbara Inez Boyle Lemon, 78, of Roanoke, passed away on Tuesday morning, October 7, 2014. She was born on July 2, 1936, in Brooklyn, N.Y. She was preceded in death by her father, John Weldon Boyle, Sr.; and by her mother, Sadie Millie Ruggles Boyle.
She is survived by her husband of 57 years, William J. Lemon; her daughter and son-in-law, Sarah L. Ludwig and Kirk A. Ludwig of Roanoke, Va.; son and daughter-in-law, W. Tucker Lemon and Catherine B. Lemon of Roanoke, Va.; son and daughter-in-law, Stephen W. Lemon and Patricia H. Lemon of Roanoke, Va.; grandchildren, Catherine K. Ludwig, Allison M. Lemon, Caroline W. Ludwig, Laura B. Lemon, Tyler J.B. Lemon, Sarah Ashley B. Lemon and Nathalie T. B. Lemon; and her brother and sister-in-law, John W. Boyle, Jr. and Susan G. Boyle; as well as many beloved nieces and nephews.
Barbara moved to Roanoke from Rye, N.Y. in 1952 just before her senior year in high school. She quickly became an enthusiastic Jefferson High School Magician and fell in love with Roanoke. Barbara triple majored in Religion, English and History at Randolph-Macon Woman's College where she graduated magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa in 1957. Barbara inherited her mother's love of dance and was an active performer from her days in Brooklyn through her college years. She and Bill married that summer and Barbara taught at Parry McCluer High School while Bill attended law school at Washington and Lee.
Moving back to Roanoke in 1959, Barbara taught at Lee Junior High School until they started a family and Barbara devoted the rest of her life to her family, education and service to others. Her civic contributions spanned the decades and included board service and officer positions with the Junior League of the Roanoke Valley (past president); the Historical Society of Western Virginia (past president); the O. Winston Link Museum; Center in the Square (founding board member); the Roanoke City Library Foundation; Thomas Jefferson's Poplar Forest; the Roanoke Valley Garden Club (past president), the Conservation Council of the Garden Club of Virginia, Blue Ridge Land Conservancy (founding chairman); Elder at the Second Presbyterian Church; and the Foundation for Roanoke Valley (founding board member). She was also a founding board member of Valley Bank.
Barbara's special love was education. In addition to her early teaching career and serving as a Sunday School teacher for 50 years, she was a founder and teacher for the Specific Reading and Learning Difficulties Association, an early advocate and resource for children with learning disabilities, and helped establish the Shedd School in Roanoke to serve those children. She was equally devoted to higher education and served as a trustee at Union Presbyterian Seminary, Randolph-Macon Woman's College and at the Virginia Western Community College Educational Foundation. Barbara delighted in the exploration of knowledge her whole life and instilled this in her children and grandchildren. She loved the ever-changing scene outside her kitchen window, especially the birds and the squirrels that she fed throughout the year. With her husband, she was a pioneer and advocate for organic farming since 1974 on Briar Oak Farms and traveled the world.
Funeral Services will be held at 11 a.m., Friday, October 10, 2014, at Second Presbyterian Church in Roanoke with Dr. George C. Anderson, pastor, and Dr. William R. Klein, pastor emeritus, officiating following a private internment. The family will receive friends from 5 to 7:30 p.m., Thursday, October 9, 2014 at Oakey's Roanoke Chapel. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to the Second Presbyterian Church Edmunds Lecture Fund, Randolph College (founded as Randolph-Macon Woman's College) Endowment Fund, or the Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, Virginia. Arrangements by Oakey's Roanoke Chapel. Online condolences can be made at www.oakeys.com.