Terrie Deniz (Petty) Chesnut

June 20, 1960 ~ April 22, 2021 (age 60)


Terrie Chesnut


“I saw the end of the road ahead,

Yet I did not stop to tarry more;

But steadfastly continued the chartered course,

Knowing soon I’d set off for another shore.”

Terrie’s course was laid before her long ago, and rather than vary that direction, she marched forward towards an inevitable outcome. Yet it wasn’t with solemn grief she persevered. Instead, she was a light in the life of many loved ones and a selfless rescuer of those in need. Each has a chapter to tell in her story written over time. 

From her early days of childhood challenges, she showed her nurturing nature by looking out for her younger sister and brother during times of need. When another sister came along, she was there to help as well. 

Trauma was never far away, as life placed some unsavory and abusive people in her path. Despite her own pain, she always did for others instead of herself, and she was able to endure the difficulties with consummate resolve until able to break away.

Terrie’s light was seen one day by John Chesnut, and both their stories became intertwined. The love they shared led to the joys of their lives, David and Timmi, and later to the next generation Chase, Paige, Paityn, and Paxton - Nana’s best friends. For years, they enjoyed fun in many forms from clam digging to camping, but fun wasn’t always limited to outdoor activities. Terrie was a prankster at heart, leading to many moments of laughter. She was an avid cupcake baker, sharing her love of sweets with all those around. Trained as a massage therapist, her delicate, healing touch was a comfort and gift.

Along her journey, Terrie would continue to show her compassion not only for people but for unfortunate animals as well. It was not uncommon for her to rescue a dog or cat in need. One such example was when driving with her sister and brother, she told her sister to stop the car when she saw a dog cross the road. She insisted they try and rescue it, only leading to her brother being bit in the attempt as the dog continued along its way. Another time, she convinced her other sister to come all the way to Oregon to pick up a cat she had “gotten” her for her birthday. It was Terrie’s nature to rescue.

Yet her internal struggles with life took her along a road leading to many difficulties which would ultimately bring her to an unfortunate shortening of her story. But even reaching that end, she continued to write more of her story. Her recent move to Scottsville, Virginia brought her some final peace. Surrounded by her family, Terrie’s last days were full of love and laughter, culminating in a fitting final champagne toast and send off with the Mayor of Scottsville on April 22, 2021. It was as if honors deserved were finally bestowed on this wonderful woman who touched the lives of so many.

Now Terrie’s story, starting on June 20, 1960, will continue through the memories of her loved ones and the courses she has helped chart. To those who are part of her story, may you continue to write Terrie’s legacy.

Goodbye, sweetheart, and don’t let your journey to heaven be sidetracked by a stray dog.

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