Virginia “Ginny” Erickson was born January 28, 1929, on the family farm in Inwood, Iowa. At the age of 3, she contracted spinal meningitis and polio resulting in her deafness. Her family moved from Inwood to Sioux Falls, South Dakota where she attended the South Dakota School for the Deaf until graduation. She then moved to Minneapolis to attend business school and it is there that she met the love of her life, Delbert “Erik” Erickson, a teacher at the Minnesota School for the Deaf at a homecoming football game. They were married the next fall. Virginia worked most of her life as a keypunch operator until moving back to South Dakota where she became a houseparent at her alma mater, a job she loved very much.
Virginia and Delbert spent their married life in Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Rochester, New York; Lanham, Maryland; Omaha, Nebraska before returning to Sioux Falls, South Dakota for much of their retirement living just across the street from her parents. They spent their final time together at Columbus Colony in Ohio. After Delbert passed away in 2001, Virginia spent the next fourteen years at Columbus Colony living near her oldest daughter, Cheryl and her family. She moved to Lawrence, Kansas last November, where she spent her last months in the loving care of her granddaughter, Zoe and her family, spending each day with her greatest delight – her great granddaughters.
Delbert and Virginia raised four children and were the very proud grandparents of nine grandchildren and three great-granddaughters. Virginia had the joy of loving and being loved by so many of her extended family, including her 13 nieces and nephews. The incredible thing about her is that she could take in all of that love, focus and attention and return it in abundance to her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, family and friends. In that she was indisputably, the very best. We miss her already.
Virginia is survived and sadly missed by her family; Cheryl (John) Balk of Columbus, Ohio, Dawn (Peter) Sliskovich of Rancho Palos Verdes, California, Kristen (Bruce) Barlow of Lawrence, Kansas and Edward Erickson of Del Mar, California. By her eight grandchildren; Austin Barlow, Elizabeth (Mara) Balk, Erik Sliskovich, Andrew Balk, Zoe (Casey) Smith, Aimee Erickson, Rachel Erickson and Paul Sliskovich. A by her greatest joys – her great granddaughters, Ebben Marie Smith, Ardis Luella Smith and Lilah Maye Balk.
Virginia was preceded in death by her beloved husband Delbert L. Erickson, her parents Emil and Marie Farstead, her siblings, Curtis Farstead, Nona Bechtold, Dennis Farstead and one grandson, John Sliskovich.