Elizabeth Whitehurst Bergesen

August 16, 2023


Past Services

Friday August 25, 2023
11:30 am

Additional Information:

Atlantic Shores – Harbourway Building

1200 Atlantic Shores Dr, Virginia Beach, VA 23454

Elizabeth Whitehurst Bergesen, age 97, left this earthly life on August 16, 2023.  Elizabeth was born in Princess Anne County in 1926 to the late Walter and Elsie Whitehurst.  She graduated from James Madison University and taught in Princess Anne County for 6 years before meeting the love of her life, Bert Bergesen.  They married in 1953 and she moved with her husband to Los Angeles, where she taught for another 20 years.  In 2001, she relocated to Atlantic Shores in Virginia Beach and was an active member of Virginia Beach United Methodist Church, She was also an active member of Eastern Star for over 60 years.

Elizabeth was predeceased by her husband Bert, her loving son Richard, her sister Reba Thompson, and brother Rev. Walter Whitehurst. Left to cherish her memories are her sister-in-law, Dr. Betty Whitehurst; nieces Beth Thompson and Monica Whitehurst; nephews Douglas Thompson (Heshmat), Rev. David Whitehurst (wife Cherie; daughters Alison and Anne) and Bruce Whitehurst (wife Genise; son Carson: daughters Cameron and Caroline).

She also had two special families she considered to be family: Dave, Cathryn, Mackenzie and Chad Brown and Mark, Kay, Bradley and John Cayo.

Elizabeth had an amazing faith and touched many lives through her prayers and generosity. A memorial service will be held on Friday, August 25, 2023 at 11:30 a.m. at Atlantic Shores in the Harbourway building.  Interment of ashes will be at Green Hills in Rancho Palos Verdes, California at a later date.  In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to Virginia Beach United Methodist Church.

Elizabeth’s family extends its deep gratitude to the staff at Harbourway and Marina Bay for their love and care, and also to Heartland Hospice for their recent and vital assistance.

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Mary Hilts
6 months ago

a year younger than Richard, I grew up two houses down from the Bergesens’ on King Avenue in Wilmington, CA, a street full of families with kids, mostly boys. Elizabeth and Bert were an active set of the neighborhood parent collective who kept watch over us all more than we realized. Bert washing and buffing out his root beer brown Mustang on the lawn out front every Saturday. Elizabeth, or Lidabis as I first called her, was always asking open ended questions that made you think – and she listened to your answers. Liz was the first not-my-mom adult woman who took serious interest in my art, all of it, visual, storytelling, music, she showed up for whatever I was presenting. Since a little girl with sidewalk chalk and a driveway, I was presenting and Liz always encouraged me, along with my mom, a full-time artist / home-maker. Liz, a full-time working teacher / home-maker, taught me with a different lens. Liz made a huge difference in my self-confidence and acceptance of my true interests as opposed to what the world thought a young woman should be in the 1960s/70s. Thank you Liz, for all the confidence and love you gave.
– Music Mary (the name you called me)

Patty Rawls Reneau
6 months ago

Elizabeth, Bert and Richard were neighbors to my family, Lloyd, Jackie, Randy and myself, Patty Rawls. Just a wonderful family to have live 2 doors down… Elizabeth and my mom bonded even more after their husbands passed away, doing many activities together and also taking daily walks through the neighborhood. It was always a relief knowing they had each other and looked out for each other. I always will remember her kisses and her beautiful smile!! Thank you Kay for always being there for her and helping Keith and me keep in touch with her! She is truly missed.

Sue Adcock
6 months ago

How fortunate I was to be a part of Virginia Beach United Methodist Church’s congregational care committee back in 2019! I had the pleasure of visiting folks in Atlantic Shores, and Liz was on that visitation list. She grabbed my heart at the very first visit. What a special lady, sharing a part of her life’s journey with me with each subsequent visit, and always doing so with her strong faith, positive attitude, and ready smile on display.
Although the pandemic curtailed visitation, I stayed connected through notes, and with each and every one I wrote, I could picture her sitting in front of me, and a smile would be on my face. Here I was, hoping to brighten HER day with a visit or note, and she was the one that made MY day a special one! What an inspiration! May her beautiful spirit live on through the many hearts she touched over the years.

Dave Brown
6 months ago

Liz has such a beautiful soul. Always positive and always grateful. What an inspiration to me and others who knew her. When she tragically lost her only son, she responded in grace and gratitude for the time she was given with him. She never exhibited any remorse, resentment or regret. Such a beautiful woman who was a blessing to my family and will be missed.