Lavina Helena Atkinson passed away peacefully at the age of 97 on April 27th at her home in Carson City.
Born to C.P. Atkinson and Dorothea Eidemiller Atkinson on a small farm in a small town in western Pennsylvania on November 3, 1923, Lavina lived a full and interesting life on her terms.
During her time on Earth, she briefly married and divorced a millionaire when very young, put herself through nursing school earning a BA and MPA; served as a lieutenant in the Navy Nursing Corp and was Director of Nursing in one of the largest hospitals in the US. She learned to fly airplanes and flew in the Grand Canyon and as spotter for a Baja 500 race team. She traveled the world seeing 6 of the 7 continents with her loving companion of over 40 years, Joseph Waxler also of Carson City. Along the way she befriended an island chieftain in Fiji and traveled the length of the Orient Express. Despite lightly slowing down later in life, she still managed to trade ‘special’ brownies at Burning Man while in her 80’s. While she had no children of her own, she took on the role of mother and grandmother to her sister Bernadette’s children upon her sister’s early passing.
Lavina retired to the Carson City area in 1988 and has been an active member of the Vestry in St Peter’s Episcopal Church as well as supporting the University of Nevada and various local organizations.
Lavina Helena Atkinson lived a full and interesting life on her own terms and is survived and will be missed by her sister, Mrs Dorothea Miller of Latrobe, PA and her many nephews, nieces, grandnephews and grandnieces in CA, PA, OH, AZ, FL and MA.
Private services and a celebration of her life will be held at St Peter’s Episcopal Church in Carson City at 10am, Saturday May 22nd. The public may celebrate via Zoom, please contact St Peter’s for details 775.882.1534.