'Elegant lady': LeRoi Moore's brothers say goodbye to their mother
For the family of late Dave Matthews Band saxophonist LeRoi Moore, Thursday, April 8, was a day of remembering–- and of additional loss.
As friends and family gathered at the nonprofit Music Resource Center to celebrate LeRoi's life and talent with a dedication of the performance hall, one important person was missing from the event: his 80-year-old mother, Roxie Holloway Moore, who suffered a massive heart attack two days earlier and died the night of the dedication.
"She was a special lady," says the youngest Moore son, 46-year-old Jeffrey, a consultant in Atlanta. Reached at his mother's Albemarle County home on Monday, April 12, Jeffrey recalled her as an "elegant lady" known for her compassion.
"She had such a charitable nature," he says, "but mostly just a really keen wit. She could have you on the floor with some of the things she would say."
The Moore family, Roxie and "A.P."–- college sweethearts from North Carolina Central University in Durham, North Carolina–- and their three young sons moved to Charlottesville in 1963 when A.P. took a job teaching and coaching at Burley High School–- now Burley Middle School–- on Rose Hill Drive.
The family eventually moved to Ivy, and the boys attended both Albemarle and Western Albemarle high schools, while A.P. moved over to Albemarle High school where he worked until the end of his life. (He died in 1986, and Burley Middle School is dedicating the basketball court to him on April 30, says Jeffrey.)
Roxie worked as a civilian for the Army, first for the JAG school, then for the Army's Foreign Science and Technology Center, a precurser of the National Ground Intelligence Center–- all while mothering three boys, LeRoi, Rodney, and Jeffrey, spaced 13 months apart.
"We were all rambunctious," recalls Jeffrey, sympathizing with his mother's plight. "You just think, 'How in the world are you still sane?'" In fact, he says, she led by example and with strong communication. "She wasn't strict," he says. "She believed in talking to you and letting you know what the rules are. She always thought it was horrible for parents to yell at their children."
LeRoi's August, 2008 death following an ATV accident on his Albemarle County farm at age 46 was a terrible blow to the family, but Jeffrey says his mother was looking forward to attending the Music Resource Center dedication with her youngest son. The last thing she told a caretaker was, "My baby's coming to take me on a trip," he recalls.
Instead, Jeffrey says, he and Rodney attended LeRoi's dedication without her, then continued on to the hospital where she had been kept on life support for two days.
"We got through the dedication," he says, "and then we said goodbye to her."
A member at Trinity Episcopal Church for 47 years, Roxie Moore had "tremendous faith," Jeffrey says, that helps soften the loss.
"I'll never worry about her," he says. "I'll just miss her."
A funeral service for Roxie Holloway Moore will be held Friday, April 16 at noon at Trinity Episcopal Church on Preston Avenue.
–Correction: The original version of this story misstated the name of the middle of Roxie Moore's three sons. He is Rodney Moore.