Joseph Bays Sellers
March 26, 1928 – July 27, 2020
Sellers, Joseph Bays ("Joe"), 92, of Chesterfield, VA, was called home to the Father on July 27, 2020. Born March 26, 1928 in Grayson County, Independence, Va.
He was preceded in death by his father, John Dallas Sellers; mother, Ola Boyer Sellers; brother, John Phipps Sellers; devoted wife, Mildred Sutherland Sellers. He is survived by daughter, Suzette S Negaard (Kris); grandson, Grayson C. Negaard (Maggie); grandson, Dallas C. Negaard (Alli); and sister, Nancy S. Corbitt.
After high school, Dr. Sellers earned a B.S. degree from Virginia Polytechnical Institute in 1949 and began his career in education that same year when he was employed as a teacher at Independence High School in Grayson Co. Before the next school year began, Dr. Sellers was called to serve his country for two years during the Korean Conflict. Upon completion of military duty in the army, Dr. Sellers served as a teacher and then principal at Elk Creek Elementary and High School from 1952-1956. During this time, he married his loving wife in 1954. Dr. Sellers earned a M.A. degree from George Peabody College (now Vanderbilt University) 1956-1957 before being appointed as principal of Strasburg High School in Shenandoah County, 1957-1958. After completing the residency and course requirements for the Doctor of Education degree at University of Virginia, 1961, Dr. Sellers accepted an appointment as the first Director of Teacher Personnel in Henrico County Public Schools, 1961¬1969. He later became Assistant Superintendent and then Superintendent of Henrico County Public Schools, serving a total of 30 years in Henrico. Dr. Sellers retired in 1991 after a career of 40 years in education.
Dr. Sellers was an active member off Highland Springs United Methodist church where he taught Sunday School for more than 40 years. He also served as Chairman of the Administrative Council and Lay Leader with numerous years in each position.
Joe was an avid sports fan, especially of baseball. His favorite team was the N.Y. Yankees which he would often tell others was due to the team's high number of members named Joe. He was a VT Hokie through and through, watching them on TV whenever possible. He was also a large supporter of the local teams at Highland Springs High School, regularly attending events and later being inducted into the Springer Hall of Fame. In addition to watching and attending sporting events (especially those in which his grandsons were involved), Joe enjoyed many years of fun and fellowship as part of the Highland Springs United Methodist bowling team, rolling countless "turkeys".
Dr. Sellers was a member of the Sandston Rotary Club beginning in 1981, The Rotary's motto of "Service Above Self" reflects the philosophy by which Dr. Sellers lived. A man of strong faith and deep love for family and friends, Joe was always willing to lend a helping hand, tell a corny joke, visit with shut-ins, and support his family in a myriad of ways. Even in his final years where he resided at Lucy Corr Assisted Living, he was known to assist others when possible. His devotion to faith, family and community left a lasting impression with all who knew him.
There will be no visitation or service at this time. The family hopes to plan a Celebration of Life in the late winter or spring of 2021. Interment will be held Tuesday, August 4 at 3 PM in Comers Rock Cemetery in Comers Rock, Va. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer's Association at www.alz.org.
Tuesday, August 4, 2020
Joseph Bays Sellers
Dianne Hughs Shuler
August 2, 2020
Recently I sent condolences on behalf or our retiree association (HRSPA), but this is from me personally. I have such special memories of Joe when he and AP and Melissa were in Personnel for HCPS, as so many of us recall. He often said 'just Joe', and I was honored to have him ask me to call him that in our later years of association. At that earlier employment time, my mother also worked at HCPS so I knew many of the folks on staff and I went to elementary school in that old facility in Highland Springs, so all of those memories are especially sweet. I saw him occasionally during his time as Superintendent, but more so in our retirement as he and Mildred were faithful members of HRSPA when I was president and seeing them at every luncheon was always such a delight and brought on a flush of memories. He was so very supportive and often assisted in giving our invocation, sort of our unofficial chaplain. I was definitely sad when they could no longer attend and I last saw him at Mildred's funeral. Ironically, I was thinking of him just last week, so I suppose I was not surprised to see his obituary in the paper. If visitation were allowed I would be there to honor him, so consider it so virtually. My sincerest condolences and thoughts are with the family. Dianne Hughs Shuler
DHShuler HRSPA Rep
August 1, 2020
Oh, my, what a dear man and how sincerely we extend our condolences to the family of Joe Sellers. So many of us have memories of his hiring us when he was Director of Personnel and then to be under his leadership as Superintendent and then to have his faithful membership and attendance, along with Mildred, at our HRSPA luncheon functions. He has been missed in recent years, but we also knew of the recent limitations ... he will always be remembered fondly. DHShuler, representative of members of Henrico Retired School Personnel Association
Anne Moss Shelton
July 31, 2020
Suzette and Kris, for several years I had the privilege of seeing and being with your father many days while I was working at Lucy Corr. Because of the virus, I am on leave at this time but I have been following weekly about him. Luckily, his room was very close to my desk so would enjoy seeing him often, by often I mean to breakfast from breakfast, to lunch from lunch, to activities from activities. As I think you know, I was very found of my friend, Dr. Sellers. May he rest in peace. Anne
July 29, 2020
I am so sorry to hear about Joe. Please know you are in my thought and prayers. Sending love and best wishes. 💕 Sandra Boyer