Calum's Story

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Calum Arthur Conway, 27, of Churchville, Va., died in Front Royal, Va., on Friday, Dec. 15, 2017.
Born Remus Darius Adam on Jan. 24, 1990, in Timisoara, Romania, Calum was adopted by Hazel Lawler and Gary Conway. He arrived in the USA on June 11, 1991, and became an American citizen on June 22, 1993. The family, including Calum's sister, Jessica Simpson, and his adopted younger brother, Atticus Conway, resided in Clifton Forge, Va., until the death of Calum's adopted mother in June 1999. In June of 2001, Gary Conway and Ann McNutt married, and the family relocated to Churchville.
Calum attended Augusta County public and private schools. He joined Loch Willow Presbyterian Church along with his parents and brother on June 5, 2005, where he actively participated in church activities including the youth and Logos programs. Calum enjoyed the performing arts attending plays at the American Shakespeare Center and acting classes at ShenanArts. His sister taught him to swim at an early age, and he relished pool, lake and ocean activities. He accompanied his dad and brother on countless fishing trips. He visited his extended family in Georgia for Thanksgiving gatherings and annual beach vacations at Emerald Isle, N.C. Calum was an avid Oriole's fan and cheered his team to victory at Camden Yards for Father's Day celebrations. Calum and his dad joyfully spent days decorating for Christmas while wishing for snow. He never missed an opportunity to dance with his mom. Calum was witty and engaging and always dreaming of a different life. His laugh was contagious. Calum was loved.
Calum's journey was often dark and despairing. He wandered for years through correctional institutions, residential placements and psychiatric hospitals. All along this path there were numerous individuals and organizations who opened their hearts and hands to Calum. We will never know all the kindnesses you bestowed upon our son. We are forever grateful.
Calum was preceded in death by his adopted mother, Hazel Lawler; maternal grandfather, Bill Lawler; paternal grandparents, George and Mary Jane Conway; and paternal aunt, Cindy Oates. He is survived by a large and loving family including his maternal grandmother, Treva Lawler of Cumberland; sister, Jessica Simpson of Fairfax, Va.; brother, Atticus Conway of Bridgewater, Va.; his parents, Gary and Ann Conway of Churchville; and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.
Memorial services honoring Calum will be held on Saturday, Jan., 20, 2018, at 2 p.m. at Loch Willow Presbyterian Church in Churchville with Calum's pastor, the Rev. Reed Hopkins and his uncle, the Rev. John Batusic, officiating. It is the hope of the family that Calum's life will serve as a call to compassion and caring for all of God's children struggling with the forces of mental illness, addiction and homelessness.
Published on January 1, 2018
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