Updated: Oct 14
Community Mourns the Passing of Long-Time Fluvanna Resident, Businesswoman, Church Member and Volunteer
Wendy J. Howig passed away early in the morning on Saturday, March 11, 2023, after an extended illness. The second child and daughter of the late Arthur and Barbara Judd Young, Wendy was born January 9, 1952, in Jamestown, and raised in the town of Cherry Creek. At the time of her passing, Wendy was 71 years old.
Early Life & Family:
Wendy spent her childhood with her family in Cherry Creek and attended classes at the Pine Valley Central School District. A rural community to this day, her father also grew-up in Cherry Creek where he established his reputation as an intelligent man (he graduated valedictorian of his class) and a successful dairy farmer. After fifteen hard fought years establishing and growing the farm, the Young's faced a crisis. Mr. Young was diagnosed with a serious illness threatening the life they built together. The Youngs were forced to sell the farm. Although many would let similar circumstances defeat them, the story took a surprising twist.
Throughout his life, Mr. Young liked working with numbers and - unlike most of us - he actually enjoyed preparing his own tax returns. He liked working with numbers so much Mr. Young even helped his friends and other farmers in the area prepare their taxes too. Mr. Young soon realized that with his unusual predilection for numbers and in-depth knowledge of the farming industry, he could provide a valuable service that people actually needed. So, Mr. Young trained as a professional tax preparer and opened a new business: Young Tax Service. Such adversity proved to be a catalyst for change that transformed not only his own life, but that of Wendy's and the entire family.
Education & Career:
Wendy graduated from Pine Valley Jr./Sr. High School in 1970. She pursued higher education at Grove City College where she received her bachelor's degree in 1974. Her life experiences and education accounted for the love of working with numbers and related fiscal matters that she shared with her father and others in her family. Wendy went into the family business, with a new branch opening in the Jamestown area and located right on the city-line between Fluvanna and Jamestown. Wendy headed-up this office working side-by-side with her siblings, Wayne C. Young, Brenda (Young) Hendrix and her brother-in-law, Bruce, as they provided tax and other financial services to hundreds of people and families throughout the County.
Marriage & Home:
It was also at this time that Wendy met the love of her life, Donald "Don" J. Howig, whom she married on December 12, 1981. Don and Wendy made their home in Fluvanna for approximately 30 years, first living on Young Street and then relocating to a house on the Ellery side of Fluvanna-Townline Road. It was in Fluvanna where they brought-up their only child, David Howig, whom Wendy loved with all of her heart.
Wendy put her accounting skills and other talents to good use especially in service to the community. Upon moving to the area, Wendy and Don joined the Fluvanna Community Church (FCC) where they remained as active members for over 40 years. Wendy served in various roles at the Church, but most especially in positions where she could put her love of accounting and numbers to use for the good of others. The congregation elected Wendy to serve for numerous years on the Church's Board of Finance as the chair, treasurer, assistant treasurer and assistant financial secretary. She also served on the Official Board, the church choir, the Building Committee, volunteered for two missions trips (one to Juárez, Mexico, and the other to Ireland) and finally as one of the longest serving deaconesses of the Church. It was in no small part due to Wendy's talents and initiatives that the Church standardized it's financial reports, audits and accounting practices, including the establishment of various funds to cover significant capital investments. Besides the Church, Wendy served on the community board within the Heritage independent living community where she and Don retired a number of years ago, as well as the Red Hatters society. In all of these roles, Wendy's service flowed from her love of people.
Those who knew Wendy knew her to be orderly, generous and kind, helpful to others, and immensely proud of her family, husband, son and six grandchildren. She provided countless blessings to those around her and these few words about her life cannot begin to summarize her life and what Wendy meant to them. Even for someone like Wendy, there's no way of counting all of the blessings she experienced and that she gave to others throughout her life.
"Your thoughts—how rare, how beautiful! God, I’ll never comprehend them! I couldn’t even begin to count them—any more than I could count the sand of the sea. Oh, let me rise in the morning and live always with You!" - Psalm 139:17-18
Visitation hours will be on Wednesday, March 13, 2023, from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM at the Lind Funeral Home.
The funeral will be held at 11:00 AM, Thursday, March 16, 2023, at the Fluvanna Church (3363 Fluvanna Avenue, Fluvanna, NY 14701). Immediately preceding the service, the Church bells will toll 71 times; one toll for each year of Wendy's life. Upon conclusion of the service, the Church invites people throughout the community to share in a dinner with Wendy's family in the Family Center. The funeral procession will take place after dinner and precede to the Cherry Creek Cemetery for the graveside service and where Wendy will be laid to rest.
Share Your Memories and Stories About Wendy:
The few words in this post just begin to introduce the life and significance of Wendy. That's why we want to hear your memories, stories and thoughts about Wendy to help the wider community and future generations understand who Wendy was and what she meant to you. Please share your memories, stories, thoughts and condolence by leaving a message in the Comment section below. We will make sure to share them with Wendy's friends and family and keep these in the Historical Society's files.
The Fluvanna Community Historical Society is a registered 501(c)(3) organization, provisionally chartered by the Regents of the University of the State of New York, and dedicated to connecting our community with our past, with each other and with a brighter future.
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