Virginia E. Sharpe

DENMARK — Virginia E. “Ginger” Sharpe, 88, of Chebeague Island, passed away peacefully at her son’s home in Denmark on July 28, 2011.

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y. on Oct. 4, 1922, she and her family moved to Miami, Fla. in the mid-1930s. Ginger, as she was known to her friends, started her professional career at Florida National Bank then left in 1943 to enlist in the U.S. Coast Guard. She spent six weeks at the Coast Guard Institute for Yeoman and graduated as a Yeoman First Class. Ginger was assigned to the Public Relations office, where she wrote press releases, war updates for local newspapers and other assignments as directed by the Coast Guard. She was transferred to Washington, D.C., where she wrote press releases and other news articles regarding the U.S. war effort for the Pentagon. She received assignments overseas and spent a number of months writing foreign correspondence in London — her favorite European city.

After receiving an honorable discharge, Ginger went back to Miami and started working in an airline ticket office that serviced national and international airlines.

Ginger went to work for Delta Airlines in 1961. In 1972, while still working for Delta, she transferred to Maine and became the first female employee at the Portland Jetport. Ginger gained the knowledge and experience to coordinate operations for arriving and departing flights. Her hard work helped open the doors for other women to follow in her footsteps in Portland.

Before retiring in 1993, she was fortunate to have the opportunity to travel the world with her son Kevin. One of their most exciting trips was to Switzerland. Together they explored the various cities of Interlaken, Lucerne, Zurich and Bern while learning the German, French and Italian cultural influences. Her favorite memory was watching Kevin ski Mt. Titles, Swiss Alps.

Ginger purchased her piece of Island heaven in 1955, but it wasn’t until she retired that her home became her sanctuary. She learned yoga and worked part-time for the U.S. Post Office on Chebeague. She appreciated the beautiful sunsets, tending to flower gardens, knitting, reading mystery novels, sing-a-longs with friends, and her beloved pets. Ginger also traveled to Cape Cod and New York to visit family.

Ginger was predeceased by her second husband, Thomas Q. Sharpe Jr.

Surviving are her two sons, Christopher Hosford of Riverdale, N.Y. and Kevin of Denmark; three grandchildren; and great-grandchildren.
A graveside service will be held for family and friends on Aug. 27, 2011 at 1 p.m. at Chebeague Island Cemetery. Please visit www. lindquistfuneralhome.com to share your condolences, memories and tributes with Ginger’s family.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Chebeague Island Library, 247 South Road, Chebeague Island, ME 04017.

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