Community Leader Hovey Dabney Passes Away

By: Autria Godfrey Email
By: Autria Godfrey Email

February 12, 2007

Those who knew him best say it was his genuine willingness to help coupled with his business savvy ways that made Hovey Dabney the respected leader he was.

Friends, relatives, and coworkers flooded UVa chapel on Monday to pay final respects to community leader Hovey Dabney.

Dabney, a former UVa rector and Charlottesville pillar, died Friday at the age of eighty three. Today he was remembered for his unending contributions.

"He was thoroughly grounded in this community. He was a creature of Charlottesville and very few people ever were, loved it knew it but he had the talent and the vision to take on anything" said John Casteen, UVa president.

His memorial service, inundated with UVa faculty and business leaders, reflected on the personal imprints he left throughout his lifetime and his charismatic way of doing so.

"He was very giggly, he and some other board of visitor members always had comments on what I was wearing, they always gave me thumbs up or thumbs side" said Patricia Kluge, who served on the Board of Visitors.

Aside from serving time in World War II, Dabney spent his entire life within Charlottesville city limits and it's because of those strong Virginia roots, that his legacy of being a visionary isn't the only thing he left behind.

"His dialect was very much a creature of Charlottesville and I had wanted to try and put in my remarks in the funeral which is something I did not, and it's the way he would say 'daggone' when something didn't look quite right and I don't have enough syllables to say the word the way he said it" said Casteen.

Dabney served as president of National Bank and Trust Company where took five branches, and turned them into ninety branches. It was later renamed Jefferson National Bank and eventually merged with Wachovia a several years ago.

Dabney is survived by his wife and three children.

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