Lucy C. Dambekalns

Lucy Brooke Clarke Dambekalns, of Timberville, age 93, died May 24, 2009. Daughter of Oscar and Bessie Clarke, Lucy Brooke was born July 11, 1915, in Culpeper, to an old pre-Revolution Virginia family. She is survived by a daughter, Lydia Dambekalns of Laramie, WY/Timberville, Va.; a grandson, Neil Smith of Montgomery, Ala.; and two first cousins and their families: Peggy Gelak of Silver Spring, Md., and Hallie Streit of Texas. She also has four nieces by marriage in Riga, Latvia whom sadly she never met.

Lucy received her BS in Math/Science from Harrisonburg Teachers College (JMU) in 1936 and her MS in Library Science from Emory University in 1939.

Lucy served as active duty Coast Guard during World War II and then lived in Washington, D.C. while working at the Library of Congress. There she met Voldemars Dambekalns, from Latvia. They married Sept. 15, 1956, and lived in Arlington, Va., until moving to a Timberville area farm in 1973, where she has lived since. Voldemars preceded her in death in 1983 as did a daughter, Mary Ruth Smith, who died in 2005.

Many who knew her recall Lucy’s keen wit and intellect, her fondness for jokes, dancing, music, and books. She was an agile athlete and loved the rural farm life in “The Mash”. She helped to found Broadway’s Village Library, where she served as a lifelong Board member. A lover of animals, in her last decade Lucy shared half a beloved dog named Buster with the Jim Strickler family. Lucy’s canines were the inspiration for many stories, jokes, and letters to the editor. During her lifetime Lucy traveled the world including Europe, Greece, and Kenya, hosteled in New England, and saw much of the United States.

A memorial Celebration of Life service will be held at the Dambekalns farm near Timberville, Saturday, June 6, 2009, at 2 p.m. to which all friends are invited.

Memorial contributions in Lucy’s honor may be made to Broadway’s Village Library or the local SPCA.