Iris Hamilton Bozarth
- Born: 03 Aug 1933, Williamsburg, VA 1
- Died: 25 Dec 2010, Henrico Co., VA
- Buried: Abt 28 Dec 2010, Westhampton Memorial Park, Richmond, Henrico Co., VA
Iris Hamilton Bozarth Fortner, 77, of Henrico, Va., passed away peacefully at home with her children and family at her side on Saturday, December 25, 2010. She was born Iris Hamilton Bozarth on August 3, 1933, in Williamsburg, Va., and grew up in Norfolk, Va., where she attended and graduated from Granby High School in 1951. She also attended Old Dominion University which at the time was a Division of William and Mary College. On August 18, 1956, Iris married Benny George Fortner at First United Methodist Church in Norfolk where they lived before moving to Richmond. She raised her three sons in Richmond where she spent the majority of her life. Iris and her husband also spent 10 years in Roanoke, Va., until his passing in August 2001.
Iris enjoyed traveling with her husband and family on trips that would take her to many foreign countries and all over the United States. They often traveled in the family plane as she and her husband thoroughly enjoyed aviation as well as the many friendships they developed through it.
Playing the piano was a joy and pleasure to Iris as she had taken lessons starting at an early age. She always filled her home with her music for her family and friends to enjoy. Her sons remember growing up doing homework while listening to their mother playing the piano. Iris' children and grandchildren meant the world to her and she was so very proud of each of them. She enjoyed spending as much time as she could with her family and caring for her grandchildren every chance she could. Family meals and get-togethers were important to her and she thoroughly enjoyed cooking a large meal and having everyone over. She was always there for any and all events her grandchildren were involved in from singing performances to plays to sporting events. Family was the most important thing to her and she instilled these same values in her children and grandchildren. Iris wishes to thank all of her family and friends who called, wrote and visited with her during her illness. Her friends were so very important to her and she was active in many card groups, clubs and organizations and was a member of Second Baptist Church in Richmond. The close-knit communities in Richmond and in Roanoke where she lived were special to her and she wishes to thank everyone there for the special times, friendships and close bonds she formed with each of you.
Iris was preceded in death by her parents, Gerald Weeks Bozarth and Iris Hamilton Bozarth; and her loving and devoted husband of 45 years, Benny George Fortner Sr. She is survived by her three sons, Glenn Weeks Fortner and wife, Julie, and their children, Bryce Warren, Ryan Weeks, Kendall Virginia and Madison Hope; son, Ben George Fortner Jr. and wife, Denise, and their daughter, Taylor Anne; son, Kenneth Bozarth Fortner and wife, Debbie, and their children, Haley Elizabeth and Gavin Bozarth, all of Richmond; brothers, Gerald Bozarth, of Elizabeth, Colo., and William Bozarth, of Virginia Beach, Va.; aunt, Margie Colonna, of Virginia Beach, Va.; and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews. The family wishes to thank all of the caretakers, hospice workers, friends and family for their devoted care, love and attention which made her final months as enjoyable as possible.
Visitation will be held on Wednesday, December 29, 2010, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Parham Chapel, Woody Funeral Home, 1771 North Parham Road, Richmond, Va. 23229. Friends and family are invited to attend memorial services at 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 30, 2010, at Second Baptist Church, 9614 River Road, Richmond, Va. 23229, Interment will be at Westhampton Memorial Park. Published in Roanoke Times on December 28, 2010