George Alfred "Chip" Hedenburg, III
Head -George Alfred (Chip) Hedenburg III ended this journey on June 20,
2016. George was nicknamed ‘Chip’ by his family soon after he was born
in Providence, RI on August 9,1956. He attended school in Providence
until the age of 11. Then the family moved to Vermont and lived first
in Winooski before buying a home in South Burlington. During his first
years in Vermont his father worked at the University of Vermont and
Chip spent a lot of time on campus which planted the seeds for his
livelong beliefs in social justice and taking action to initiate
change. At the age of 14 he participated in an anti-war rally and
occupied the Army recruiting office in Burlington. As he grew up
in Vermont, he further developed his love of nature, spending much time
exploring the fauna and flora, fishing the streams and ponds, and
hiking the forests and mountains in Vermont, New Hampshire and New
York. He met lifelong friends during these years, including some who
now summer in the Outer Banks.
graduated from South Burlington High School in 1974 and attended
Johnson State College. He then began in earnest his lifelong pursuit
for meaning and developing his own spiritual beliefs. During High
School he started working for the Green Mountain Club which grew into
several different seasonal positions over the years working on
Vermont’s Long Trail for both the GMC and the National Forest Service.
He hiked the 273 mile Long Trail from end to end in the fall of 1981.
His summers were spent on the trail and he worked winters in Burlington
in various jobs including a long stint as a taxi driver and dispatcher.
It was at the cab company where he first acted on his social justice
beliefs to organize a union drive with the employees. It also
began his lifelong support of Bernie Sanders as Chip worked on Bernie’s
first statewide campaigns and used his taxi driving skills to transport
Bernie to campaign events. While working on the Long Trail at Little
Rock Pond in the summer of 1984 he met Leigh Saunders whom he soon
married and they began several years of homesteading, off the grid at
their “Clearcut Farm” in Groton, Vermont.
moved back to Burlington and worked full time as a service dispatcher
at Adelphia Cable where again he was a union rabble rouser. During this
time he was very active in the Burlington First Unitarian Universalist
Society helping to lead the Pagan worship group. Finding
himself single again, he relocated to the Outer Banks. He married Mary
Ellen Riddle and they spent several years together with his
stepdaughter Zoe, whom Chip loved very much. He started working at
Charter Communications in 1999 as Lead Dispatcher. He quickly
worked his way up the ranks to Account Executive in Charter Business
and, as he was also a Chamber of Commerce ambassador, became well known
in the business community from Virginia Beach to Hatteras. In the
meantime he had also spearheaded the Kitty Hawk/Nags Head drum circle,
was active in the Unitarian Universalist Church in Kitty Hawk, founded
the band Mamba Jamba, and undertook a rigorous Ashtanga Yoga
practice. A little over a year ago he followed his heart, left
his white collar job, and created his dream, Shiva’s Drum Yoga Shop in
Nags Head. Not surprisingly, the shop quickly became a spiritual home
for the OBX drumming and yoga community.
Chip loved drumming at
the beach, gardening, music, cooking (also eating !) and travel.
He went to Iceland to visit the land of the Sagas, the American
Southwest to experience and drum at Burning Man, Ireland to see the
countryside of his ancestry with his mother, and finally to India to
study yoga and Hindu culture .
He is survived by
his beloved mother Miriam Hedenburg Foerster, his sister and brother in
law Jody and Mike McLaren, his sister Beth Hedenburg, nieces and
nephews and several grand nieces. His friends were numerous, and they
all felt that he was their brother. He leaves a saddened Family Tribe
who know that they will see him again someday.
His home, by the ocean of his youth, became the Outer Banks and its tight knit community.
Chip has been an inspiration to all who met him and lived his life following his beliefs.
Memorial Service will be at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Kitty
Hawk, NC on June 29, 2016 at 4:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, please
consider a donation to the Feline Hope Animal Shelter, PO Box 893,
Kitty Hawk, NC 27949 www.felinehope.org
Condolences to the
family may be expressed at www.gallopfuneralservices.com Gallop Funeral
Services, Inc. was entrusted with care.
Gallop Funeral Services, Inc. 6917 S. Croatan
Hwy. Nags Head, NC 27959