Introduced Version House Resolution 43 History

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(By Mr. Speaker, Mr. Thompson, and Delegate Mahan,

on Behalf of All Members of the House)




Commemorating the passing of Jackie Withrow, a woman, wife and states woman of enormous compassion and courage who dedicated her life in service to the most vulnerable of West Virginians.

    Whereas, Jackie Withrow was born on March 28, 1918, in Mabscott, Raleigh County, West Virginia, with the birth name of Beatrice Von Brickner Neubert but who, early in life, was donned “Jackie Boy” due to her tomboy antics and attitude; and

    Whereas, Jackie Withrow, a life long Raleigh County resident, died on November 11, 2010, at the age of ninety-two in Crab Orchard, West Virginia; and

    Whereas, In 1960, Jackie Withrow ran for a seat in the West Virginia House of Delegates, the only woman among twenty four candidates, a “rose among thorns” she stated throughout her campaign, winning the election as one of the top four vote-getters and being reelected eight more times; and

    Whereas, Jackie Withrow, while serving in the House of Delegates, championed the medical needs of those in need of long- term care, especially the mentally ill, and was the first female to be named the Chairperson of the House, Health and Welfare Committee, being widely recognized by her colleagues as the resident expert on health care and mental health care; and

    Whereas, Jackie Withrow’s unfailing work on behalf of the health of West Virginians led her to membership on the Board of Directors of Appalachian Regional Hospitals, the Committee on Prenatal Health, the West Virginia State Plan for Comprehensive Mental Health Services, the National Association for Mental Health and a host of other organizations; and

    Whereas, Jackie Withrow’s accomplishments of which she was most proud while serving the state as a delegate in the House of Delegates included legislation which transformed the state’s mental health care facilities; legislation requiring PKU testing of newborns which serves to prevent the development of neurological abnormalities, including mental retardation; and, for being co-sponsor on the first bill in West Virginia to provide compensation to coal miners suffering from black lung disease; and

    Whereas, During her tenure in the West Virginia Legislature, Jackie Withrow earned the respect and admiration of her peers and became the first woman legislator to serve on the powerful Finance Committee; and

    Whereas, Jackie Withrow earned the distinction of being the second longest-serving woman legislator in the history of West Virginia, choosing not to seek reelection in 1978 in order to spend time with her husband, W.W. “Bill” Withrow, to whom she was married for fifty-six years and for whom she was a loving and devoted wife; and

    Whereas, Following her eighteen years in the House of Delegates, a body politic for which she was known to say “is no longer a man’s world”, Jackie Withrow’s service to vulnerable West Virginians continued as she remained active on numerous boards and as a volunteer at the VA Hospital until physically unable to continue; and

    Whereas, Jackie Withrow was a tireless representative voice for our most fragile citizens and truly an advocate of mercy, justice and love; and

    Whereas, The passing of Jackie Withrow must not go unnoticed; therefore, be it

    Resolved by the House of Delegates:

    That regret is hereby expressed by the members at the passing of Jackie Withrow, a woman who devoted her life to improving conditions of and for humankind’s most fragile and vulnerable; a woman of great compassion and love; a woman whose life and actions have given quality of life to untold numbers; a woman without whom countless, vulnerable West Virginians would have undoubtedly suffered; a woman ahead of her times who touched the lives of all with whom she interacted; and, be it

    Further Resolved, That the Clerk of the House of Delegates forward a certified copy of this resolution to Jackie Withrow’s nephew and wife, Charles and Zona Neubert; to her great nephews Shane Neubert, Bryan Coulter, Kenneth Cozart, Jimmy Cozart, Rusty Cozart, Jason Cozart; and, to long-time friend, William Wooton.

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