Cindy Bailey – Cindy Bailey was born and raised in Roanoke, Virginia but her roots go back to Botetourt County. Her great great grandfather, Lucian Garland, was a Botetourt County Sheriff and farmer. Cindy graduated from Virginia Tech with a B.S. in Marketing. After college she worked in the marketing departments of banks in Roanoke and Richmond. While working in Richmond she met her husband Hal, a native of Daleville, and relocated to Fincastle. Cindy and Hal currently reside at Hal’s family homeplace in Daleville, Baileywick Farm, and have two children, Julia and Hal, Jr. Cindy is the Marketing Director at the Bank of Fincastle and is pleased to be a part of the board of HFI.
Karen Beasley – A resident of Botetourt County for over 40 years. She and her husband Dan have lived in their current home, built in 1910, for almost 23 years. She is retired from Orvis, a long time volunteer at the Botetourt Food Pantry and an active member of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Fincastle. Karen and Dan have 3 children and 5 grandchildren.
Lynne Bolton – Born in Fincastle and lived there until her father was transferred when she was 11. A graduate of Mary Washington University, Lynne first worked in corporate America for many years in the plastics industry. In 2004, Lynne moved back to Fincastle from Philadelphia, Pa. in order to help with her aging parents. At that time, she also decided to try “giving back” some of what she was blessed to receive over her academic years. As a result, she is now a social studies teacher at Lord Botetourt High School, and very active in school activities while focusing on helping the students to excel whenever possible. Because of her love of history and historic preservation, Lynne was and is delighted to be a member of HFI, and to have been asked to serve on the Board of Directors over the next term.
Alan Brenner – Born in New York City and raised in North Carolina and Newport News, VA, Alan moved to Fincastle in 2006. Alan is a graduate of VCU and JMU. He is the retired principal of Lord Botetourt High School and spent over 30 years in education as a History teacher and high school administrator. After retirement, he started a solar installation business, Main Street Solar, LLC, with his son, Andrew. Alan has been involved in historical preservation for all of his adult life and brings a wealth of construction and repair skills to the board. Alan has two children, Andrew and Evelyn, and two grandchildren, Henry and Pierce.
Kip Burton – I grew up in north Georgia and attended Georgia Southern College, majoring in biology and chemistry. Plans to become a veterinarian were altered when I became a Naval Aviator instead. I met and married Lyn and we had three children, who have made us very proud. 21 years were spent flying, moving and traveling, with the Navy. During my military service I received a masters degree in Business and Management. After my military retirement, I went to work for Piedmont Airlines and continued with them until my final retirement. We live on a small farm and love our animals, land and beauty here in Botetourt. I have served a treasurer of HFI, worked on many committees for festivals and events, and have worked on the Lewis & Clark disk dedication for the town.
Lyn Burton – I am originally from Atlanta, Ga. I attended Florida State University. After graduation, I worked for Eastern Airlines . I met and married, Kip, who was a Naval officer. I was then a military wife for the next 21 years. We had three children and moved from coast to coast and finally settled in Virginia Beach. I began teaching Middle School and after moving to a little farm near Fincastle, taught at James River High School. I have been a member of HFI since 2007 and have enjoyed many wonderful times with many wonderful people.
Patsy Dickerson – Patsy (Simmons) was born and raised in Fincastle during the 50’s and 60’s. She remembers Bolton’s Store, Vaughn’s Store, the Drug Store and the best store – The Dime Store with penny bubble gum and a toy section. The Fire Department was in charge of putting up and taking down the Christmas lights and the members (including her father) walked around town and cut on and off each strand. Of course there were not nearly as many strands as there are today. It was a glorious time. She is from a fifth generation (at least) Botetourt County family tree. Her roots are deep and her appreciation for the history and beauty of this unique town, Fincastle is strong.
Betty Holt- A native of East Tennessee, her ancestors migrated from Fauquier County, VA through Botetourt ounty in 1791 to the area of North Carolina that would become Tennessee. She has a B.S. degree from East Tennessee State University and spent her career as an accountant wherever she lived. After her graduation from ETSU she moved to Baltimore where she met her husband, Ed Holt, who is from Fincastle and is a seventh generation Botetourt native. Together they have lived and raised their family in Baltimore, Raleigh, and Marietta, GA. They have two daughters who currently live and work in Raleigh, NC. When they realized that retirement was on the horizon, they left the Atlanta suburbs and moved to Daleville to renew old friendships and find a slower pace of life. Active in Bonsack Baptist Church, she is learning more about Botetourt and helping others learn about the history of this beautiful area.
Jim Lambert – A native Mississippian, Jim grew up near Natchez on a farm which included a large, circa 1740 home which was originally part of a Spanish Land Grant before Mississippi became a state, where he developed an appreciation of small communities and structures which were and remain a part of history. He earned a B.S. from Mississippi State University and during his work career held a number of positions in print journalism in towns in Mississippi and Alabama. For 28 years he was the owner, publisher and editor of a weekly newspaper and served the community and state in various capacities including president of the Mississippi Press Association, as the volunteer chairman of the state Newspaper In Education committee for more than 10 years and as a member of the board of trustees of the local community college. Upon retirement in 2003, he and wife Wilma (deceased) moved near Fincastle to be near children and grandchildren and reside at Oakland, a circa 1819 farm house with adjacent acreage which allows him to continue raising (mostly keeping) horses, taking part in local community activities and enjoying good neighbors and friends.
Sarah Meadows – Grew up in Botetourt, and while she lived close to Blue Ridge in the Rainbow Forest neighborhood, she spent many childhood days in Fincastle, visiting friends and enjoying such events as the Christmas parade, the Fincastle Festival, trick-or-treating and weekly trips to the library. Always having an interest in the town itself, her family hoped to someday move there and restore one of the historical homes. That lifelong dream became a reality in 2013 when Sarah purchased the Peck Cottage on Jefferson Street. Sarah has ancestral ties to Botetourt on both sides of her family. She is a descendant of John Alderson, who settled just west of Fincastle in the 1700s and is credited with the establishment of the first Baptist Church west of the Blue Ridge Mountains. She is also a descendant of Johann and Eva Dorothea Kessler (Lehman), whose German family arrived in Botetourt in the 1700s in what is now Blue Ridge. Those ancestors are buried in the Old Glade Creek Cemetery adjacent to Colonial School, where Sarah attended. Sarah is a graduate of Virginia Tech and Hollins University. She is an elementary Art teacher in Salem and is the illustrator of the children’s book, Hello Hokie Bird! In her spare time, she enjoys home restoration projects, gardening, genealogy, American history, collecting early American antiques, photography and painting.
Lissy K. Merenda – A resident of Botetourt County for over 30 years, Lissy located here from New Jersey by way of attending college at Hollins University. There she received a BA in Psychology and Sociology. Later she received a M. Ed in Counseling from VPI and SU. She was employed for 31 years with Roanoke City Public Schools working briefly as a social-work counselor for six years and 25 years in community relations with job descriptions including Public Information Officer, event coordinator, public relations and marketing, and coordinator of their Volunteer Partnership Program. She has served on numerous committees and boards at the local, regional level and was the President of the Virginia School Volunteer Program for eight years. “The Volunteer Partnership Program was my passion,” she said, “building it to national recognition and becoming a trainer and facilitator for the national organization.” It was through the national organization that she met her husband, Dan. Lissy has two sons and a daughter and Dan has two daughters. They have two Golden Retrivers, Meriwether and Hamilton, who are true members of the family, she says. Lissy took early retirement, worked briefly for United Way and then she and Dan discovered Santillane and decided to take on the project of renovating this beautiful home. Santillane is now a venue for special events and a B & B. In addition to serving on the HFI Board, Lissy serves on her church board, Williamson Road Church of the Brethren where she has been an active member for 30 years. “I enjoy gardening, decorating, crafts and entertaining so Santillane is a pretty good match for me,” she says.
Marcia Neighbors – Is a fifth generation “Fincastlian”. Other than my years in college and teaching 5 years in northern Virginian, I have lived here all my life. I taught choral music and drama for 34 years in Virginia and 30 of those years here in Botetourt County. I have just retired and am finding that my life is busier now than ever. I am married to my wonderful husband, Mack, and have three children, Chad (Cherie), Christine (David) and Ginni Ellen and one grandson, Isaiah. We live in a farmhouse dating from the 1830’s and have had a great time restoring it and finding just the right antiques for it. Of course, this is an ongoing process. I have been involved with HFI for many years. However, there was a big gap in my involvement as my children hit their teen years. I served on the board during the late 80’s and early 90’s as well as chaired the Craft part of the Fincastle Festival. I am excited to be working with Patty King and Weldon Martin and the Botetourt Historical Society on the outreach program for the schools. I feel that it is vitally important to show these children their past and get them excited so they can take this history to the future. There is so much that needs to be shared with the students so that our history will live on.
Betty Reynolds – Betty Reynolds grew up in Staunton, graduated from JMU and then married Jim Reynolds and moved to the Roanoke area. I retired from teaching kindergarten in 2010 after teaching for 33 years. Jim and I have two children, Anne Simmons and her husband Chad who live near Fincastle with their two daughters, and a son Phillip Reynolds and daughter-in-law, Kristin, who presently reside in Sacramento, California. The primary reason we moved to Fincastle in 2016 was to be closer to family. We have really enjoyed meeting new folks and helping with the HFI events and projects. This is obviously an area rich in history and I’m impressed with the dedication and enthusiasm of members of the community in trying to preserve this heritage for future generations.
Jim Reynolds – Bio coming soon