Former supervisor, newspaper reporter dies

Published 5:38 pm Wednesday, January 6, 2016

A former member of the Lunenburg County Board of Supervisors and reporter for The Kenbridge-Victoria Dispatch has died.

Jane Allison Gatling Atkinson, 71, of Victoria, died Monday, Dec. 21.

Her obituary was posted on the website of Clarke & Staples Funeral Home, which was in charge of the arrangements.

A graduated of Victoria High School who went on to attend Longwood College, Atkinson’s fondness for reading and writing led to her become a news reporter for The Kenbridge-Victoria Dispatch and The Charlotte Gazette in 1979. She covered local government, political issues, crime and law enforcement, and numerous other topics in both counties before giving up coverage of Charlotte County to concentrate on Lunenburg.

In 2000, Atkinson was appointed to the Lunenburg board of supervisors representing Plymouth District-#1 to fill the unexpired term of Tommy Wright Jr. after he was elected a state delegate. The next year, she ran unopposed and was elected in her own right. She was again elected in November 2005 after again running unopposed. She served as the board’s vice-chairman in 2008 and 2009 before deciding not to seek a third term, her nine-year tenure on the board ending Dec. 31, 2009.

County Administrator Tracy Gee said the board of supervisors “offer our sincere condolences to the family of Jane Atkinson”

“She was a faithful public servant, and her contributions to the courthouse construction project and numerous other board matters will always be appreciated and remembered,” Gee said.

Atkinson was with the Victoria Chamber of Commerce, serving three terms as president, and two as secretary. She was also a charter member of the Victoria High School Preservation Foundation, In the 1980s, she was a member of the Victoria Industrial Visitation Committee for State Certification, and a was former member of the Victoria Woman’s Club.

Atkinson was a lifetime member of the Victoria United Methodist Church, pianist for the Victoria Baptist Church Youth Choir when her children were young, and pianist for a number of local events through the ‘70s and early ‘80s.

In addition, Atkinson was founding member of the Main Street Monopoly, a string-quartet of longtime friends. The group frequently performed in the area as well as across the state.

A graveside service was held, Monday, Dec. 28, at Bethel Church Cemetery in the Brunswick County town of Alberta. In lieu of flowers, the family ask donations be made to the Victoria Fire and Rescue Squad or the Victoria United Methodist Church.