Helen Grant Headley went peacefully to her heavenly home on February 8, 2024, surrounded by her family. She had a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus that gave her peace, joy, and rest in Him throughout her life. She always gave Him credit for the talents she had and her love for people because she believed everyone was special to God and He wanted everyone to have a relationship with Him. A true prayer warrior, the family will miss her constant prayers.
She was born in Martinsville, Virginia on June 18, 1931, the daughter of Grace Bowles and Herbert Coleman Grant. Her father died when she was two, and at three years old, Quinton Lee Ramsey became her stepfather for almost 70 years. She graduated from Martinsville High School where she was a cheerleader, represented her school at Girls State, and represented her city as Miss Martinsville at the Harvest Jubilee in North Carolina in 1949. She attended Mary Washington College and Radford College where she was a member of Lambda Sigma Pi sorority. She met William A. Headley, Jr. (Bill) on a blind date at Virginia Tech and they were married two and a half years later. Bill served in the army as a Lieutenant. While he was in Korea, Helen returned to her parents’ home and worked at DuPont in accounting. After Bill’s return, they moved to Portsmouth, Virginia, and she worked at the Portsmouth Naval Hospital in Civil Service until her first child was born, after which she became a “stay at home” mom.
Helen and Bill moved to Orlando in 1957. She and her family became very involved in First Baptist Church/Orlando where she and Bill served for over 50 years. They were active with Campus Crusade for Christ and helped with Lay Institutes in churches in Florida, and Helen taught neighborhood Bible classes. Also caring for the city of Orlando, she raised funds for many charities through Junior Sorosis (past president), Women’s Committee of Civic Music and several other organizations. She was honored as one of the 100 Outstanding Club Women in Florida and was Mrs. Orlando and first runner-up to Mrs. Florida in 1964. In the early 1970s, she served on a committee under Mayor Carl Langford to replace the Municipal Auditorium (now Bob Carr).
Helen enjoyed playing bridge in several groups with cherished friends for over sixty years. She was an avid Orlando Magic and Virginia Tech fan, and loved spending time with her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She loved the Lord Jesus and spent many hours studying the Bible and praying for her family and friends.
She was predeceased by her parents and her brother, Quinton L. Ramsey, Jr., and she is survived by her three children: William (“Chip”) A. Headley, III (Cheryl), Lee Anne Smith (Derrick), and Thomas W. Headley (Lisa); her sister, Patsy Ramsey Norman (Dillard); brother-in-law Vernon T. Headley (Michelle); her eleven grandchildren: Erin H. Warren (Kris), Chelsea H. Weathers (Michael), Lauren Headley, William A. Headley, IV (Anna), Sarah S. Nadelkov (Anthony), Katherine H. Taurisano (João), Jennifer H. Sledge (Brian), Derrick R. Smith, Jr., Laura Headley, Thomas W. Headley, Jr. (Gabriella), and Emily Headley; ten great grandchildren: Tate, Bennett, and Kipton Warren, Cooper and Elizabeth Headley, John, Lucca, and Emma Kate Taurisano, Maddie and Cami Weathers and several nieces and nephews.
A graveside service will be held Tuesday, February 13 at 10:00 a.m. at Greenwood Cemetery, Orlando.