Virginia Beaven Strasenburgh Pacala Memorial

February 17, 2024

Feburary 17 | 1:00 PM |

Join the family of Virginia Beaven Strasenburgh Pacala as they hold a Memorial Service on Saturday, February 17 at 1:00 PM.  .  It will be held in sanctuary of the First Baptist Church of Rochester, 175 Allens Creek Road at the corner of Clover Street.  There will be light refreshments following the service. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you make a donation in Gina’s name to the First Baptist Church of Rochester.


Virginia Beaven Strasenburgh Pacala Obituary

Obituary published on by Anthony Funeral & Cremation Chapels – Brighton on Dec. 8, 2023.

Pittsford: December 5, 2023. Virginia Beaven Strasenburgh Pacala, also known as Gina, passed away peacefully on December 5, 2023, in her apartment at Cloverwood Senior Living Center in Pittsford, New York. She was surrounded by her loving family. Gina was 95 years old.

Gina is preceded in death by her first husband, E. Griffin Strasenburgh, Jr (Griff), second husband, Leon Pacala, her mother Helen Marjorie Beaven, her father Joseph C. Beaven, her sister Barbara B. Spoehr, and her brother Bruce C Beaven. She is survived by her beloved children Carol S. Lutterbein (Todd), James G. Strasenburgh (Kristi), and Julie S. Waterman (Dan), Stepchildren Mark Pacala (Kim), Stephen Pacala (Lise) and James Pacala (Kara) many grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.

Gina was born on July 27, 1928, in Rochester, New York, while her mother was visiting family. At the time her family was living in Larchmont, NY but soon moved to Kenilworth, IL where she grew up. Gina attended New Trier High School and was a graduate of Smith College to which she dedicated many hours as an alumna.

While attending Smith College, Gina’s family vacationed in Florida with the Edwin G. Strasenburgh, Sr family where Gina met and fell in love with Griff Strasenburgh, whom she married in 1950. Their marriage spanned 35 years until his untimely death in 1985 from cancer. In 1990, Gina married Leon Pacala who she had first met while serving on the Board of Trustees at Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School where Leon was serving as president of the seminary in the 1970’s. They were married just shy of 20 years.

Gina’s quiet dedication extended beyond her family. Gina was the first woman to sit on the Board of Trustees at Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School and The Board of Directors of Chase Lincoln First Bank. Gina further volunteered her time and resources to various community charities and organizations, including Highland Hospital, Rochester Area Twig, Hillside Children’s Center, The Smith Club of Rochester, Rochester Garden Club, and the Chatterbox Club of Rochester to name just a few.

Gina was a warm and genuine person who touched the lives of many. She was known for her graciousness, kindness and respect for others. Despite her numerous charitable endeavors, Gina was humble and private about her contributions to her community.

Gina found joy in her hobbies which included tennis, golf, gardening, and reading. She believed in living a full and meaningful life, always striving to make a positive impact on those around her.

Gina’s family extends a very special thank you to Sue Matthews and all members of “Team Gina”, a dedicated groups of aides who helped our mother safely navigate the end of her life from Companion Care through Hospice. These highly skilled, warm and caring women brought companionship to our mother and well as love and safety.

A memorial service to celebrate Gina’s life will be held at 1 pm on February 17, 2024, at the First Baptist Church of Rochester. In lieu of flowers, Contributions can be made in Gina’s memory to the First Baptist Church of Rochester, 175 Allens Creek Road, Rochester, NY 14610. The Interment will be private and at the discretion of the family.

Gina Pacala will be deeply missed by all who had the privilege of knowing her. Her generosity, grace, and dedication to others will forever be remembered and cherished.