Dr. Virginia Salyer Roberts , MD

virginia roberts

August 22, 1940 ~ January 5, 2024

Born in: Flat Gap, KY
Resided in: Asheville, NC

Dr. Virginia Salyer Roberts, MD, died in her sleep at home on Elk Mountain on January 5, 2024.

Virginia’s 83 years, beginning with her birth in Flat Gap, KY, took her around the world again and again but always back to the mountains. A graduate of the University of Kentucky and of the University of Louisville School of Medicine, Virginia was an anesthesiologist early in her career and then an MD in private practice, with plenty of entrepreneurial acumen in between. She served as Medical Director at Highland Farms and at the Alcohol and Drug Addiction Treatment Center in Black Mountain while also volunteering at ABCCM and maintaining a solo primary care practice in Swannanoa for many years.

She and her husband Tom Roberts made their lives together an adventure, building a home on a sprawling farm in Madison County; owning and operating car dealerships in Burnsville, NC, and Bedford, VA; developing a gas station and convenience store; and leasing several commercial properties. She and Tom eventually settled on Elk Mountain, with a view south across Asheville, Canton, and Mount Pisgah toward a sunset that goes on seemingly forever.

Virginia, always the gardener, filled her home with plants and dogs and, for a time, a barn full of cows and cats, as well as guinea hens and a couple of retired plow horses who nibbled on overgrown orchard apples in the fall and new spring grass in the nearly forgotten coves of her farm.

Virginia and Tom traveled across Europe, New Zealand and Asia, floated up the Mekong from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City, and drove from Asheville to Alaska and back as many times as they could, spending summers checking in with family in the Midwest, exploring the Canadian Rockies and Vancouver Island, and taking the Great Alaska Highway until they reached Alaska and the Arctic Circle. They would return home with a multitude of stories and trinkets, the menus from the best meals they’d discovered, and one or two more houseplants for the greenhouse Tom built her at home. Then they would hit the road again.

Virginia is survived by Tom Roberts, her spouse of 42 years, one brother, three daughters, a son, nine grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

The family would like to extend a special thank you to Sheryl Musacchio, Carolyn Edwards and Heather Polechio for their friendship, loyalty and kindness.

The memorial service will be held on Saturday, June 1, at noon at Lewis Memorial Park, 415 Beaverdam Rd., Asheville, NC 28804.


Funeral Home Assisting The Family:

Groce Funeral Home - Patton Ave.
1401 Patton Ave.
Asheville, NC 28806


Memorial Service: June 1, 2024 12:00 pm

Lewis Memorial Park
415 Beaverdam Road
Asheville, NC 28804


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  1. We send our condolences to the family during this difficult time. Virginia was a beautiful lady and a friend to our family. She always had a beautiful smile and kind words to share. With our Love,

    Reeves Grocery Family. Don and Maxine

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