Linda Draper Newton 1935-2018

Linda Draper Newton of Marshall, Va., retired to the Piedmont with her husband in 1991 from Fairfax, and soon became an important player in local historic and land preservation and garden clubs. She passed away on March 24, 2018, peacefully at her home.

She was born March 10, 1935, at West Point, N.Y., the daughter of Ethel Woodruff Draper and Maj. Gen. Philip H. Draper, Jr. She is preceded in death by her husband, Col. Robert W. Newton, her parents, and a sister, Anne. She is survived by her children, Robert, Tracey, David and his wife, Jamie, and Maryanne and her husband, Nicholas; her six grandchildren, Rebecca, Zachary, Draper, Avery, Nell, and Trey; and two siblings, Stephen and Sherri.

Linda pursued many interests and developed countless friendships at multiple postings during her early years as an “Army brat” and later as an Army spouse. She recalled that Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, was a sleepy idyllic tropical paradise until the morning of Dec. 7, 1941, when Pearl Harbor was bombed. “Our dear mother protected our fears by taking us up to Koli Koli pass in case the Japanese landed, all the while pretending we were going on a picnic,” she later wrote. She remembered a late-night ride in an Army truck past Pearl Harbor, seeing burning ships, then spending the first night in a Honolulu school house in case of sabotage.” The war years were spent in her mother’s home town of Columbus, Ga., and in London.

Linda studied interior design at Bennett Junior College and George Washington University and finance at George Mason University. After marrying an Army officer, she moved every year or two and eventually settled in northern Virginia, where she raised their four children, rode horses, lead girl and boy scouts, attended Little League, volunteered and gardened. She put her skills to use in family businesses and charitable organizations. She helped found The Family Respite Center, now known as the Memory Insight Care Center, in Fairfax, and served as both president and treasurer.

She also served as president of the Fauquier Loudoun Garden Club, working to preserve natural places and structures, including the Goose Creek Bridge. She helped found and was president of the Atoka Preservation Society, which preserved the history and structures of the crossroads village of Atoka. She bred thoroughbreds, including Maryland Million winner Miss Lombardi. Linda was also a member of the Middleburg Garden Club, Colonial Dames of America, the National Society of Colonial Dames and the Trinity Church Bell Choir. She created a beautiful space for family and friends at Roundaway Farm, which was opened for Virginia Historic Garden Week.

A funeral service will be held April 19 at 11 a.m. at Trinity Episcopal Church, Upperville. In lieu of flowers, remembrances can be made to the Trinity Church Campus Renewal Fund or U.S. Military Academy Equestrian Facility.

Leave a Reply