Judith MacKenzie Garvey died peacefully on May 18th, 2023, following a long fight with cancer.
She was born on March 14th, 1938, to Kenneth and Yolonne MacKenzie. She and her sister Jane (Dyer) grew up in Weirton, West Virginia. She graduated from West Virginia University in 1959 with a degree in political science and the intention of studying law, but on a dare interviewed and was hired as a stewardess. In a few years she was an instructor of stewardesses for American Airlines. Known as Scottie MacKenzie she flew out of Chicago and Dallas in the 1960s, the heyday of silver service, white-gloved air travel. She travelled throughout the US and on to Europe, China, and Japan. She met a surgeon called James M. Garvey. They married in secret in a small Texas town, as airline rules required stewardesses to remain single.
They returned to Weirton to raise a family, and there she pursued her passion for golf in earnest. She had a remarkably focused, highly competitive nature and excelled at many sports, but on a golf course she could put the ball nearly anywhere she liked. Her club was the driver, and she hit it hard. She played from the men’s tees for laughs, outdriving players who were bigger and stronger. She won the William’s Country Club Women’s Championship 19 years running and competed as an amateur with success in tournaments throughout the 70s and 80s.
She became an LPGA Professional, travelling the circuit as a teaching pro, with a scientist’s appreciation of the physics of the golf swing. She settled in Florida to teach, collect seashells, and throw tennis balls for dogs on the beach, but retired and returned to Weirton to look after her mother. She loved old tools, working on cars (she rebuilt a Triumph TR-3), refinishing golf clubs, Gershwin, chocolate, Hungarian stuffed peppers, and books and films about war and espionage.
She will be remembered with love by friends and family, her son James (Viola) Garvey, nephews Kenneth (Gale) Dyer, Brian Dyer, Tim Garvey, Ron Garvey, and a grandson she adored, called Finn.
Judy’s family will receive friends and relatives on Saturday, June 3, 2023 from 12 noon to 2 PM at the Greco-Hertnick Funeral Home, 3219 Main Street Weirton, WV.
A private family interment will follow the visitation.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Judy’s memory to the charity of your choice.
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