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Cathleen “Cathy” Rhoades born February 15, 1951 in New Castle, Indiana passed away Friday, January 22nd in Zion Crossroads, Virginia from a pulmonary embolism, unrelated to COVID, after suffering complications from a benign thyroid tumor removal in July that left her with a tracheostomy. Her passing occurred with her husband at her bedside and was mercifully quick, peaceful, painless and without precognition.
She is survived by her mother, Susan Rhoades of New Castle, Indiana, aged 96, her husband, Michael Zervas, her children, Jennifer Baker (Rich) of Oviedo, Florida and Jakob Bol of Bremo Bluff, Virginia, her grandchildren, Tyler Baker and Sarah Baker, her sister Josie Barger of Spencer, Indiana, her brother Gene Rhoades (Jackie) of Ohio, her brother Bob Rhoades (Janet) of Georgia, multiple nieces and nephews and her dog Maggie. Her blended family added two more sons, James Zervas and Trevor Shand, and two more daughters, Gina Wintz and Tammy Sterling and five additional grandchildren.
Cathy will be remembered by many for her bright glowing smile that radiated love and acceptance. She had the kindest, warmest heart and gave so much of herself to others.
Cathy graduated from Chrysler High School in New Castle, Indiana in 1969. She graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, and an Associates Degree in Nursing in 1973. She made the world her home, living in Texas, Alaska, Oklahoma, Michigan, Tennessee, Mannheim, Germany, and finally Virginia. She made friends wherever she went and taught her children to love the whole world with all its cultures and religions without judgment. Cathy was always there for her children and grandchildren. She loved them unconditionally. She answered their calls without fail and always had a listening ear. She supported them through their ups and downs and lifted them out of their lowest lows and rejoiced in their highest highs. Throughout her travels, Cathy worked as a nurse. She found her career love as a labor and delivery nurse, and finally as a nursery nurse at Martha Jefferson Hospital in Charlottesville, Virginia where she ended her forty-six-year career. While living in Virginia, she found her independence and the love that supported her through her last and hardest days, Michael Zervas. They adopted Maggie, a black and white goldendoodle, and bought a house in Zion Crossroads which Cathy made their home.
Due to COVID, memorial services to be held in New Castle, INand Charlottesville, VA will be delayed until people can safely gather. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to one of Cathy’s favorite charities: