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Woman's love of knitting carried on
Spotsylvania County woman leaves a knitting legacy as hundreds of skeins of yarn she collected are passed along to other knitting groups

 Sue Hampton (left) holds the sweater her late mother had begun knitting for her. Her neighbor Lena Gonzalez Berrios had it finished and gave it to Hampton.
Cathy Dyson/THE FREE LANCE-STAR
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Date published: 10/21/2012

By CATHY DYSON

For many of her 79 years, Adelia Ayers brought warmth to those around her through the baby sweaters, scarves and afghans she knitted.

Ayers died in May 2011, but her knitting legacy is being passed along to others. Groups in the Fredericksburg area--as well as one as far away as North Carolina--have received some of the hundreds of skeins of yarn she collected.

Other knitters have picked up where her clicking needles left off and have made cold-weather items for the homeless, caps and blankets for newborns and prayer shawls for anyone going through a tough time.

"I just wish she would have been alive to see this," said Ayers' daughter, Sue Hampton. "It would have meant so much to her."

Hampton, who lives off Lafayette Boulevard in Spotsylvania County, knew her mother couldn't resist a beautiful skein of yarn.

Ayers and her husband, Bill, who died this June, lived in Summerlake in Spotsylvania and traveled when both were in better health.

Adelia Ayers, whose friends called her "Ditty," picked up needles and yarns from various places they visited.

But Hampton had no idea just how many supplies her mother had amassed until she had to go through her things.

In bedrooms, closets and the attic, she found about a dozen large Rubbermaid containers chock-full of yarn. Others were filled with nothing but needles.

Then there were books.

Not just thin pamphlets that gave instructions for a single project, but thick volumes filled with examples, ideas and techniques.

There were other books, too. Ayers was an avid reader--of mysteries, suspense novels, romance.

Hampton didn't know what to do with the items. She talked to her neighbor Lena Gonzalez Berrios, who works at the Salem Church branch of Central Rappahannock Regional Library.

Berrios took a lot of the large-print books to the library and had ideas for the yarn.

She shared some with Sue Lawson at the Porter Library in North Stafford. Lawson leads people of all ages who enjoy making things with yard and call themselves A Loosely Knit Group.

They used Ayers' supplies to make items for people at the Thurman Brisben Homeless Shelter.


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