Marybeth Hillmer died on February 3, 2021 after a long battle with lung cancer which she fought with the same grace and strength that she brought to her life. Marybeth was a physical therapist at Lynchburg Training School, Centra, and at Blue Ridge Therapy Associates, helping children and their families for many years. She gave time, love, and energy to the Centra Neonatal Clinic and the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Clinic. Her generosity and love for her patients was deep and constant and she dearly loved buying presents for each one. Her former patients, many grown into adults, will miss her greatly but achieved many gains with her help. Throughout her life, Marybeth, also known as Aunt Doofy, doted on her many nephews and nieces, with “photo moments,” shopping trips, and celebrations a’plenty. They will miss her greatly but learned great lessons from her. Marybeth was also a great friend to many, in and out of the community, teaching them to quilt and to give of themselves to others. Her friends are better off for having known her and will miss her each and every day. Finally, Marybeth was “mom” to many cats, opening her heart and home to many but also feeding and loving a colony of feral cats as well. Her cats loved her and will miss her, especially at feeding time. Finally, as those who know her well, Marybeth also loved shopping and could find bargains and deals like a champ. The economy will miss her!
The family wanted to thank her many friends who have kept her smiling these past difficult years, who adopted her cat children, sent oodles of cards, and kept her company throughout the quarantine. We appreciated the support of the doctors at Lynchburg Oncology, especially Dr. Paul and Dr. MacCallum.
As per Marybeth’s wishes, there will be no memorial service. Spend your time with your loved ones; give unselfishly; time is precious.
In keeping with her love of cats, Marybeth requested that donations to the Lynchburg Humane Society (http://lynchburghumane.org/) be considered, especially in lieu of flowers which the cats are known to knock over and spill. Another option is “Give Kids the World,” (https://www.gktw.org/) a non-profit resort in Florida that provides week-long, cost-free wish vacations to critically ill children and their families from around the world. Marybeth spent many weeks there volunteering and believed in their mission.
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