The Rev. Philip Gene Godwin


The Rev. Philip Gene Godwin, 83, of Masonic Home of Virginia, went to be with the Lord on Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2018. Rev. Godwin was a dedicated pastor who loved his Lord.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Mr. Fitzhugh Lee Godwin Sr. and Mrs. Louise Justis Godwin.

He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Shirley Pruitt Godwin; daughters and sons-in-law, Kathy and Karl Hade, Karen and Barry Durant, and Kari and Jonathan Chapman; grandchildren, Joshua and wife, Ashley, Devereaux Rentz, Jeremiah Mullins, Tabitha Chapman, Courtney Chapman, Sarah Chapman, and Chase Durant; great-grandchildren, Jordan Mullins and Abram Mullins; brother, Fitzhugh Lee Godwin Jr.; sister, Connie Rutledge; and nephews, Stuart and Michael Deitrick, and Fitzhugh Lee Godwin III.

Rev. Godwin was born and raised in Hunting Creek. He loved fishing and duck hunting on the Eastern Shore.

After graduating from Parksley High School, he served in the U.S. Air Force with the military police. He was commissioned as a Virginia state trooper, serving 13 years, and was employed with Virginia Power, for 20 years, as an investigator.

He was with the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church as a pastor, while attending and graduating from Wesley Theological Seminary. He served Union United Methodist Church, Sign Post United Methodist Church, Onley United Methodist Church, and Parksley Baptist Church, all on the Eastern Shore; Welcome Grove Baptist Church, in Warsaw, Va.; and Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, in Colonial Heights, Va.

He was a Master Mason for 50 years, Potentate of Acca Shrine, in 1990, and Grand Chaplain in the Grand Lodge of Virginia, 2005 and 2018.

Rev. Godwin’s Celebration of Life service was conducted at Fort Lee Baptist Church, 2727 Charles City Road, Henrico, VA 23231, on Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018.

Graveside services will be conducted Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018, at 1 p.m., at Fairview Lawn Cemetery, Hill Street, Onancock, VA 23417. Masonic Rites and Military Honors will be held, honoring the Rev. Godwin’s longtime dedication to the Masonic Lodge, and service to his country.

In lieu of flowers, the family has asked for donations to the Masonic Home of Virginia, P.O. Box 7866, Richmond, VA 23231, or to the Acca Shrine (Memo: Children’s Hospital Transportation Service), 1712 Bellevue Ave., Richmond, VA 23227.

Memory tributes may be shared with the family at

Arrangements were made by the Williams Funeral Homes, Parksley and Onancock.

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