Helen W. Shapiro

by | Jun 18, 2020 | Obituaries

Norfolk—Helen Bell Walker Shapiro, 79, passed away at her home in Norfolk on Monday, June 8, 2020, after a brief, but brave struggle with cancer.

Helen was born in February of 1941 in Norfolk, Va. and grew up on Bute Street. At Maury High School she discovered a lifelong passion for writing and research, and quickly put it into action as a youth reporter at the Virginian-Pilot. She earned a B.A. in English from the College of William and Mary, and an M.A. from the University of Virginia. She taught for several years at high schools in Philadelphia, Pa., and Charlottesville, Va., and was an instructor at Old Dominion University, Virginia Wesleyan, and other local colleges. She was active in numerous community organizations including Hadassah and the American Association of University Women.

Helen was a selfless caretaker who was devoted to her family. She lovingly cared for her mother; she was a dedicated and steadfast partner to her husband, Sam; she raised two sons; and she loved time spent with her grandchildren. Helen was a lifelong learner who cultivated a rich variety of intellectual interests, including family history, genealogical research, art history, and culture. She was happiest pursuing these interests while traveling the world with her husband and sons.

She was preceded in death by her father Clyde Sefton Walker and her beloved mother, Dorothy Busky Walker.
She is survived by her husband of 58 years, Dr. Samuel L. Shapiro of Norfolk; two sons, Stephen (Benoit Wohlgroth) of Bennington, Vermont and David of Washington, D.C.; and two grandchildren, Samantha and Nathan Shapiro. In recent years, she was happy to nurture ties with cousins Faye Drew and Paul Walker.

A graveside ceremony was held for family at the Hebrew Cemetery, in Norfolk. Memorial donations to the charity of one’s choice. H. D. Oliver Funeral Apts., Online at www.hdoliver.com.