Margaret McIver Blevins
August 28, 1940 – June 9, 2021
Margaret McIver Blevins, 80, died peacefully at Rosewood Village Assisted Living at Hollymead in Charlottesville, Virginia, June 9, 2021. Born in Bristol, Virginia, Margaret was the daughter of the late Ruth McIver Blevins and Robert Leslie Blevins and was a member of Central Presbyterian Church where her grandfather Rev. Donald McIver was pastor. Her family owned and operated the Blevins Funeral Home in Bristol where, upon reflection, Margaret had said was quite a formative time for her. She attended Queens College in Charlotte, North Carolina where she earned a bachelor’s degree in French. During most of the 1960s, Margaret lived in Washington DC and worked at the Center for Applied Linguistics. There she met her first husband, Arthur Thomas. The two were members of St. Stephen Episcopal Church and were very active in social justice and civil rights movements. The two later moved to Charlottesville, Virginia where Margaret gave birth to her only child, Stephen Thomas. Throughout much of her career life, Margaret worked and studied at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. She was the administrative assistant to the Director of Biological Psychiatry Research Laboratories in the Department of Psychiatry, held several positions in the Department of Campus Life including, assistant to the Dean and Vice President, the International Student Advisor, a coordinator for Disabilities Services, and later the Special Assistant to the Vice President of Institutional Advancement. During this time, she earned her master’s degree in theology at the Candler School at Emory, Cum Laude, Honors Thesis with a concentration in Pastoral Care and Counseling. Margaret served her chaplain residency and training at Emory University Hospital and Crawford Long Hospital. She was ordained into ministry at Oakhurst Baptist Church in Atlanta in 1998 and was installed as Minister of the Christian Church in Americus, GA and Hospice Chaplain at Hospice of Americus and Sumter County in 2001. Later she was Hospice Chaplin for Odyssey Hospice at Decatur Hospital in Decatur, GA. Margaret was devoted to Oakhurst Baptist Church where she served in so many ways. She was a mainstay in the Oakhurst Recovery Program, leading small groups over the years. She celebrated her own recovery each year on Epiphany and on more than one occasion helped plan that service or would share her amazing journey that day. She and her husband John Shippee received the Heart of Oakhurst award in 2007. In the last years of her life, she moved back to Charlottesville, VA to be closer to her son’s family. Margaret found community as a member of the Westminster Presbyterian Church which she said reminded her so much of the community at Oakhurst. Later, she resided at Rosewood Village Assisted Living where she found care during her struggle with Alzheimer's disease. Her family is immeasurably grateful to the loving support of the staff at Rosewood Village and Hospice of the Piedmont for Margaret during her short stay there, much of that time happening during the covid pandemic.
Margaret is predeceased by her husband, John Shippee, and her nephew, Gordon Scott Blevins. She is survived by her beloved son, Stephen Thomas and wife, Karen Elizabeth Thomas, two grandsons, Jesse Thomas and Quinn Thomas to whom she was known as “Grandmere”. She is also survived by her brother, Robert Leslie Blevins, Jr. and his wife, Joday Blevins, nephew, Robert Leslie Blevins, III and his wife, Tracie Blevins, their daughters Sarah Blevins Birdsey (husband, Thomas Birdsey) and Mary Catherine Blevins, nephew, John Litton Blevins, and her step-son, Kenneth Atwell. She is also survived by numerous close cousins.
Margaret was a gentle soul, intelligent, curious, witty, caring, and full of laughter. She was much loved by those that knew her. We miss you so, dear lady! Family and friends will celebrate her life at Oakhurst Baptist Church in Atlanta at a later date this year.
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Margaret McIver Blevins
June 24, 2021
Margaret was truly a bright light. Her smile, sense of humor and delight in life was a joy. We traveled to Scotland together to take some of John's ashes and so enjoyed our time with her. We miss having her and John in our lives. Condolences to Stephen and all the family as they grieve the loss of such a dear lady.