Virginia C. "Jenny" Dinsmore

June 22, 1941November 4, 2012
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On Sunday, November 4, 2012, Heaven welcomed Virginia Ruth Craver Dinsmore with her trademark smile. While Jenny left us entirely too soon, and entirely too young (71), she was a testament to the old adage, “It’s not how long you live, it’s how well you live,” and so she did. Jenny spent her life more concerned about the welfare of others than herself. She made sure her loved ones, friends and the newest people she met were doing well. Even at the end of her struggles, she always wanted to know if those she was with were having a good day and if they needed anything.

Jenny was born and raised in Texarkana and graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with degrees in English, Classics and Secondary Education. She was a member of Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority. Jenny was also an entrepreneur, starting two Austin companies: the first touring company in town, Yellow Rose Tours, which eventually became Gray Line Tours, and JB Properties, where she had a successful career as a real estate broker. Later in her life, she taught children and adult Sunday School classes and was a Bible Study Fellowship children’s leader. She also tutored prisoners, helping them to get their GED. She truly enjoyed her work in many interesting jobs and all the people she met.

Her true love was her family and especially her children. Her daughter Stacy helped care for Jenny when she first became ill. Losing Stacy, just two years ago, dealt Jenny a very tough blow. Her son David is so lucky to have had her in his life. She introduced him to one of his passions when she signed him up for a golf lesson at Texarkana Country Club with Don Murphy. Jenny also played golf for many years, first at Texarkana Country Club, where she and Bill lived for 10 years, then later, at Balcones Country Club in Austin.

She is preceded in death by her daughter, Stacy Lynn Bales, her husband, Bill Dinsmore, and her parents, Howard and Ruth Craver.

She is survived by her son, David Lawrence Bales of Austin; sister and brother-in-law, Jane and Garland Kennon of Houston; brother, William Craver of New York; stepchildren, Cherise Bell, Denise Jenkins, Denny Dinsmore and their families; niece, Diane Kennon Shrull and family of Richardson; and nephew, Stephen Kennon and family of Austin.

A memorial celebration of Jenny’s life will be held Friday, November 9, 2012 at 2:00 p.m. at Bethany United Methodist Church, 10010 Anderson Mill Road in Austin, TX 78750, with a reception to follow at Balcones Country Club, 8600 Balcones Club Drive, Austin, TX 78750.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Alzheimer’s Association, Capital of Texas Chapter, 3429 Executive Center Drive, #100, Austin, TX 78731, or, Texans for Stem Cell Research at


  • Memorial Celebration of Life Service Friday, November 9, 2012

Virginia C. "Jenny" Dinsmore

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Libby Frohlich

June 18, 2013

I just learned of Jenny's passing. She was a great friend to me in Texarkana. Jenny was so full of life and fun to be around. I will always remember her adventuresome nature and laugh. She was special to my husband and our two girls loved her. We all loved her. She was a true texan gal.

David Bales

March 6, 2013

I would like to thank everyone of you for your incredibly kind words and love for mom and our family.We consider ourselves lucky to count all of you friends.Your words of encouragement, sympathy and prayers make it just a little easier as we celebrate mom's life.Thanks!

Jake Billingsley

March 4, 2013

Virginia Craver was junior high and high school classmate and my forever friend. Her spirit lives in every person she met and I am so thankful that I was one of those. Rest in Peace Virginia.

November 11, 2012

Mother and I were greatly saddened to learn of Jenny's death. What a lovely picture of her--we remember that wonderful smile. Please know that you and the rest of the family are in our thoughts and hearts.

With love,

Margaret and Janet Ingram
Austin TX

Lorraine Chammah

November 11, 2012

David, I am so sorry to just learn of your mother's death. I hope good memories of the rich life she lived are a comfort to you now. With deepest sympathy. Lorraine Chammah

Lee Leatherwood

November 9, 2012

Jenny and I used to laugh about the fact that we had been friends through the hospitality industry for almost 10 years before I ever met you. It is indeed a small world--and an emptier one without her. She was so proud of you and always your number one supporter, just as you were hers. Your devotion to her, especially over the last few years of her illness, has been and will continue to be an inspiration to all who know you. Elaine joins me in sending our heartfelt condolences.

November 8, 2012

A poem written by my Mother before Alzeimers .took her.....

Go gently from this good earth,
Let the angels quide your way,
To a place of peace and tranquil beauty.
That we all may find some day some day.

Life is not so gentle, nor peaceful or sublime.
May you find it on your journey,
Somewhere along the line.

Connie Patton

Caroline Mitchell

November 8, 2012

I'll always remember your Mom driving around in her Cadillac with her left foot propped up on the seat. She was either coming or going to play golf. Her Southern twang was music to my ears as she would stretch single syllable words to two or three syllables. She was a funny, bubbly, busy woman who cared deeply for you and Stacy. I'm glad I knew her.

Alicia Ranzau

November 8, 2012

Jenny was a wonderful friend to me and my daughters for almost 40 years. When my youngest daughter was graduating from high school, Jenny announced that she and Stacy would have a luncheon in her honor. She was not only kind, funny, and smart, she was classy. David, may your memories of your Mom bring a smile to your face always. We love you.

Suzanne Holman Steadman

November 8, 2012

I'm so sorry David to hear the news of your mom's passing. My memory of your mom goes back to our 'Sunnybrook" days when I used to babysit you and your "little" sister. You are in my thoughts and prayers.