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Virginia Mae Schroeder Zebe, age 96, of Red Bank, died peacefully Feb. 21 surrounded by family at Monmouth Medical Center. Born in Beaver Falls, PA, Feb. 4, 1923, she graduated from Beaver Falls High School and attended Geneva College, marrying James Wilmer Martin in 1946. While raising her growing family of four in the 1950s and 1960s she worked outside the home as a bookkeeper.  Her children, and later her grandchildren, benefitted from the cooking, knitting, and sewing skills she perfected at home. The family moved several times around the country because of job relocations, finally settling in New Jersey where boating, oysters, lobsters and the quiet peace of the ocean became a major part of Ginny’s life.

In 1977 Virginia married Charles “Chas” Zebe, adding his five adult children to their family circle. Ginny and Chas began a life together living in Iran in 1978 while Chas worked for AT&T. After returning to the States, the couple set up housekeeping in Lake Hopatcong for 10 years and then in Valley of the Lakes in Hazelton, PA, subsequently moving to Stuart, FL in 2003. Their retirement years were filled with trips across America and Europe. When she wasn’t traveling, Ginny kept active on the tennis courts in Florida, playing well into her 70s. During any quiet time she had she could be found working on her computer adding to her family genealogical history, and writing her personal memoir, completing almost 300 pages of her book at the time of her passing. The Presbyterian Church and weekly Bible Study classes were also a source of strength and peace to her, both in Florida and later in New Jersey where she moved after the passing of her beloved Chas in 2011.

Virginia moved into the Atrium in Red Bank in 2012 where she continued to enjoy a life full of her favorite things: oysters, chocolate, rainbow sherbet, an occasional Stoli martini, making people feel appreciated and Family - most of all Family. She was happiest surrounded by the love and chaos of a family holiday gathering. The first thing you saw at a get-together was her welcoming smile and the first thing you felt was her warm hug. The sharp mind that served her well as a young bookkeeper never failed her, even well into her last days. Her wish was to be remembered as a loving Mother to her wonderful children and as a Wife who enjoyed being married almost 34 years to a loving husband.

Virginia is survived by her three sons; James, Jeffrey, C. Randall, and daughter, Christine; stepsons; Charles, Erik, and Carl and stepdaughters Barbara and Donna; nine grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.

There will be a Memorial Service Saturday, March 30 at 10:30 a.m. at The Presbyterian Church at Shrewsbury, 352 Sycamore Ave., Shrewsbury, NJ 07702. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in Virginia’s memory to The Presbyterian Church at Shrewsbury.

Bruce S. Thompson, Owner & Manager, NJ LIC #3740