Nelsen Williamsburg

Growing up, my mother, Carolyn Ward, was my protector, my teacher, my role model, my biggest fan….my world. And that never changed. I was truly blessed to have had her as a mother and I am thankful ...

Carolyn Tamplin Ward

3 March, 194227 September, 2021

Carolyn Tamplin Ward of Williamsburg, Virginia, passed away peacefully on 27 September 2021.

She is survived by her children, Mary Katharine Vesely (Michael) of Chesapeake, Virginia; Christopher David Ward (Kate) of Fairfax Station, Virginia; four grandchildren, Elizabeth Vesely, Kirsten Vesely, Brandon Greyson, and Annamarie Ward; and one great grandson, Sterling Vesely. She was preceded in death by her beloved husband of 54 years, David Burdick Ward; her sister, Nancy Tamplin Jewell; and her brother, Major William Frederick Tamplin, Jr. She also leaves behind a large extended family of brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, nephews, nieces, grandnephews and grandnieces. Born on March 3, 1942, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Carolyn was the second child of Mary Agnes (Miller) and William Frederick Tamplin. She grew up in Mount Lebanon, Pennsylvania, where she graduated from high school. She went on to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Chatham College (Class of 1964). Following graduation and marriage, she taught elementary school for three years. During a brief move to New York City while her husband served in the Coast Guard, she worked as an Area Supervisor for the American Field Service. In 1990, after raising her children, Carolyn joined the staff of The Arts Council of the Morris Area (Morris Arts) in New Jersey where she served as the Executive Director for fifteen years (1991-2006). She retired with her husband to Williamsburg in 2006.

All her life Carolyn felt very strongly about volunteering and was committed to giving back to the communities in which she lived. She was a member of The Junior League of Morristown, New Jersey, where she chaired various committees and projects as well as serving as its president. While her children were growing up, she served on a number of community boards including Morris Shelter (Homeless Solutions), United Way of Morris County, Morris Tomorrow, and First Night Morris County. Following her move to Williamsburg, she served on the Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra board and volunteered for ten years as a docent at the Thomas Everard House and Wetherburn’s Tavern, and as a garden guide for The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

Carolyn was an avid gardener, especially of herbs. She had a deep love of wild birds and enjoyed opportunities to see them. Carolyn traveled extensively throughout her life with her husband Dave, her family, and her closest friends, seeing many far away and exciting places. Her great passion was spending time with family, especially the many years of summers spent with extended family at the family cottage on Lake Erie. A Celebration of Life will be held at 11:00AM on 9 October 2021 at the Williamsburg United Methodist Church, 500 Jamestown Road, Williamsburg, Virginia. Due to COVID protocol, masks must be worn, and we will not be able to gather following the service. Thank you for your understanding. If you are unable to attend the celebration in person, please join us via livestream at

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra, The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, or a charity of your choice.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Ward family.


  • A Celebration of Life Service

    Saturday, 9 October , 2021


Carolyn Tamplin Ward

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Urlee O’Donnell

2 October 2021

Carolyn was a dear friend to so many here in Williamsburg. A beautiful lady with a lovely smile and always a kind word. She so loved Dave, their children, grandchildren, and great grandchild. She will be greatly missed by all her friends. Rest peace with Dave, dear Carolyn.

From the Family
From the Family