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Michael Shane “Rusty” Hummer

Michael Shane “Rusty” Hummer

Michael Shane “Rusty” Hummer, 50, of Hamilton, Virginia, tragically and accidentally passed away on January 6, 2017. He was predeceased by his father, Roger Hummer, of Hamilton; his aunt Barbara Hall, also of Hamilton; his aunt Sally Hellman, of Romney, W.Va.; and his beloved Persian cat, Tiffany.

Born on August 14, 1966, at old Loudoun Hospital on Cornwall Street, Rusty attended Waterford Elementary, Blue Ridge Middle and Loudoun Valley High schools, later graduating from George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia with a B.A. in Communications. Especially during Loudoun’s booming real estate market of the 1990s, he was a very successful realtor for ERA Five Star and an annual recipient of top sales awards. He was a long-time, active and supportive member of the Loudoun County Republican Party; he sponsored numerous political events throughout the years and was especially well-known for his passionate campaigning style.

He had deep area roots dating to the 1700s; he said his ancestor, George Washington “Fox” Hummer, first appeared in Loudoun land tax records in the early 1700s; further, it was rumored “Fox” had served as the personal mail carrier for General George Washington. Among the Hummer family’s more recent historically significant presence in Loudoun County, however, was his great-aunt Fannie Mae (nee Hummer) Clopton’s ownership in Paeonian Springs during the early 1900s of two popular boarding houses, when the town’s subterranean waters were touted for alleged curative properties, and even transported via the Washington and Old Dominion Railroad (now the W&OD Bike Trail) to Washington, D.C. for special use by congressman and senators.

Rusty was a skilled gardener, who was especially proud of his heirloom hot peppers and tomatoes, bay plants and other herbs; he possessed a love for cats, antiques and European cars, especially Porsche 911s, preferring always to take “the back way” down Loudoun’s old, country roads. He was particularly proud of his dark gray, imported, 1989 Mercedes-Benz 300E, which he had artfully emblazoned in 2016 with “(vote) Trump” stickers. Never in a hurry, he often could be seen slowly motoring toward one of his familiar haunts - places like Southern States in Purcellville – in order to buy such agricultural items as “10-10-10,” or driving up to the nearby horse stable to collect manure to add to his fertilizer mix, a recipe that had been handed down by family.

Rusty’s memory of our once-primarily agrarian community was unparalleled and he often discussed his childhood recollections of such now bygone hallmarks as the toy basement at Ben Franklin; when U.S. Route Seven was still two lanes; Hamilton’s first convenience store, the Kashway; and once-working area farms - “Rebel Hill” - over-top of which now sits the Harris Teeter shopping mall - and “Francis” farms, both in Purcellville.

Rusty, for all your off-colorful antics and misbehavior, we shall eternally miss your steady presence, endearing nature and reassuring eccentricities – your lush, green gardens and expertly cultivated lawns; your rising in the early mornings, or in the unlikely event of a frost sometimes mid-nights in order to drape sheets over your plants to protect them, or to tend to your mother; your love for nature, especially for all cats, and even for the birds of the sky, whose feeders you faithfully maintained during cold, winter months. Though your torment became our own toward the end, we nonetheless depended on your steadfast nature, and your absence remains devastating for those who loved you. You are the sound of the waves that rush onto the sand; the leaves that rush in the wind; my sight of the first crocus and forsythia in spring; and the first snow fall in winter.

Rusty leaves behind his mother, Joyce Hummer, of Hamilton; sister, Jill Sloane and brother-in-law, Raj K. Bhatia, of New York; uncle Frank and cousin Stevie Hall, of Hamilton; countless other extended family members, friends, colleagues, and yes, maybe even a few enemies; his wife, Juliet Taylor; and the couple’s six beloved cats - Batman, Robin, Joe Pinkerton, Condor, Cleopatra and Kid Rock.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Alcoholics Anonymous at http://www.aa.org.

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