George Edward Herder, 94, served in the Navy during World War II

George Edward Herder
George Edward Herder

George Edward Herder, 94, passed away peacefully at home Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019, in Virginia Beach. He was born to Reba and Lester Herder in Belvedere, California, and raised and educated in the Ozarks in Missouri.

On Dec. 20, 1945, George married his childhood sweetheart, Bessie Lee Young in Chanute, Kansas. He was in the U.S. Navy at the time. Together, they had seven children, Terry Lee, Larry (Wanda), Phillip Herder, Linda (Jim) Knarr, Janet (Bill) Addington and David and Rebecca (Jessie) Ayala. Bessie Lee preceded him in death.

George served in the U.S. Navy during World War II. He received several decorations, including a Purple Heart after his ship, the New Mexico, was struck by a kamikaze. After the war, he continued to serve until his full retirement in 1963. He started his second career at Norfolk International Airport as an aircraft assistant. He loved to fly and was a member of the Norfolk Naval Flying Club for many years. He founded and directed the Lighthouse Servicemen’s Center in Norfolk that was open for local servicemen. He pastored a pioneer church for several years in the Glenwood Park area of Norfolk. Following this, he continued in the ministry, serving as an interim pastor for several churches.

In 2001, George married the new love of his life, Bootsie Loraine Terry, and they lived happily together in Virginia Beach until his passing. They enjoyed studying the Bible together and traveling. Most of all, they truly enjoyed each other. Bootsie brought to the marriage two sons, Jim (Kim) Piland and Don (Michelle) Piland. Together, they have 12 grandchildren and several great-grandchildren.

George was truly a servant of God and unreservedly put God first in his life. His faith in God never wavered and continued growing stronger as he ran his race set before him. He was sacrificial to his needs as a loving father and devoted husband. His tenderness and love for others will be remembered by his family and those who were close to him.

A visitation will be held from 1 to 3 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 5, from at Fairview Church of Christ, 1112 Tatemstown Road, Chesapeake. Services will follow. Burial will be held in Arlington National Cemetery at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, please send contributions to Fairview Church of Christ at or American Veterans Center in George’s name at

Share online condolences with the family at Altmeyer Funeral Homes & Crematory.

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