Cornelia Connie Giesen, 88, of Radford, Va. died early Tuesday morning, March 14, 2017. Connie was loved by many people, and she will be greatly missed by her family and friends.

She earned her bachelor’s degree in vocal music with a minor in visual arts from Richmond Professional Institute (Virginia Commonwealth University), and she performed at the Metropolitan Opera and other prestigious venues in her early years.

Connie always thought of others first, and as a result, she was active in many civic organizations including the American Cancer Society (Board Member), the American Heart Association, the Junior Women’s Club, the Radford Historical Foundation (Board Member), the New River Historical Society, Republican Women of Virginia (Board Member), Friends of the Roanoke Symphony and the Roanoke Youth Symphony (Board Member), First Nighters at Radford University and Glencoe Museum (Board Member).

Connie also worked on numerous political campaigns including for Congressman William Wampler, Governor John Dalton, Senator John Warner, Senator Paul Trible, President George H. W. Bush and President Ronald Reagan.

Connie is preceded in death by her husband, Dr. John William Giesen, and her daughter, Linda Owen Giesen.

She is survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Martha G. Hale and Thomas Hale; her son and daughter-in-law, John Giesen and Dana Felch Giesen; her daughter and son-in-law, Anne G. Sayers and Dennis Sayers; and her grandchildren, Morgan Sayers, Kate Sayers Moser, Jake Giesen, Sarah Hale, Margaret (Meg) Hale and Laura Giesen.

The family is overwhelmingly grateful for the love and kindness Connie received from the staff at Commonwealth Assisted Living and Good Samaritan Hospice.

The family will receive friends at Christ Lutheran Church in Radford on Saturday, March 18 from 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. The service will begin at 12:30 p.m., followed by a graveside service at West View Cemetery in Radford.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made in Connie’s name to the Humane Society of Montgomery County (PO Box 287, Blacksburg, VA 24063, or donate online at

Connie’s address for acknowledgement of the donation is 400 Robertson Street, Radford, VA 24141.

DeVilbiss Funeral Home in Radford is in charge of arrangements.