Funeral arrangements for Jud Honaker
Ben Judson Honaker, Jr.
Ben Judson Honaker, Jr. – better known as “Jud” – passed away on Friday, September 22, 2023 in Fredericksburg. A loving husband, father, and grandfather, Jud was one of the best and most respected real estate developers in Fredericksburg’s history and a kind-hearted, honest businessman who cared deeply about those less fortunate. Jud believed in helping anyone and everyone.
Jud Honaker was born on August 11, 1964 in Fredericksburg to Ben Honaker, Sr. and Nancy Honaker. He has an older sister, Patricia Honaker Shepherd (Glenn). He shared 37 years – 29 in marriage – with the love of his life, Christy. They were married on October 22, 1994, and had two children, Paige Honaker and Grant Honaker (Alee Blount). Jud also recently became a grandfather to his grandson Bennett Judson Honaker. Of all his numerous accomplishments throughout his magnificent business career, his children were his pride and joy.
Jud graduated from James Monroe High School in 1982, and attended East Carolina University, Old Dominion University, and University of Mary Washington. Jud’s proudest educational accomplishment was “earning his Ph.D. from the Carl D. Silver School of Business,” which is an ode to his beloved friend, mentor, and business partner.
Jud learned the meaning of hard work in childhood, when he got his first job at age eight on Braehead, the Snead Family Farm. After starting his career with Mary Washington HealthCare in real estate, he began working for the Silver Companies in 1986. Through loyalty, determination, hard work, and commitment, Jud spent the next nearly 40 years with the company, rising all the way to the top as President of Commercial Development. Working alongside Larry Silver, his friend and business partner, he was instrumental in developing many of the region’s largest commercial developments including Central Park in 1995, which was the largest retail development on the East Coast at the time. He was also instrumental in developing Harrison’s Crossing, Cosner’s Corner, Doc Stone Commons, Celebrate Virginia North and South, Cowan Crossing, Quantico Corporate Center, and many more. Jud was also central in securing the deal with the Fredericksburg Nationals, in partnership with the team owners, the Silber Family, to bring professional baseball to his hometown. He loved being a part of Silver Companies. He loved his work and the people he worked with. Jud was respected, admired, and deeply loved by those who worked with him. He brought an energy and joy to the office that could never be replaced.
In 2017, Jud was awarded the Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce’s prestigious Prince B. Woodard Leadership Award, which is given to “a person that has provided the Fredericksburg community with extraordinary service over a large number of years through dedication, leadership, ethics and example.” Like his mentor Carl D. Silver before him, Jud showed everyone in the Fredericksburg community and beyond what unfailing honesty and integrity – combined with exceptional service – means.
Jud’s big heart and motto of “git ‘er done,” also meant “git ‘er done” for the people who needed help in the community. Perhaps the most important part of Jud’s leadership was the fact that most of the things he did to change lives were away from the spotlight. He quietly helped countless local families with a wide variety of issues without seeking fanfare or credit. He used his influence in countless ways to help less fortunate people get the help they needed, whether it was financial, a job, a place to stay, or medical needs.
Throughout his professional life, Jud also gave generously to the Rappahannock United Way, Mary Washington Hospital Foundation, Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce, Friends of the Rappahannock, and many others. For years, Larry and Jud would provide the staff at Silver Company with money and send them out to buy Christmas gifts of toys, clothes, electronics, and bikes for those in need. The lobby of the building would be full of gifts to be packed and delivered. It was also a gift to the staff to be able to share Christmas in such a joyful way.
One of his greatest pleasures in life was watching the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Washington Redskins in his “man cave” surrounded by friends and family. He loved visiting his generational family home in the Outer Banks, and enjoyed watching CNN, Blue Bloods, and Criminal Minds. He was also known for listening to the same songs over and over.
Jud is survived by his wife, Christy Honaker; children Paige Honaker and Grant Honaker (Alee Blount); grandson Bennett Judson Honaker; and sister Patricia Honaker Shepherd (Glenn Shepherd). He was preceded in death by his parents, Ben and Nancy Honaker.
The family will receive friends from 5 to 7 p.m. on Sunday, October 1, 2023 at Covenant Funeral Service, Fredericksburg. A funeral service will be held at 12:30 p.m. on Monday, October 2 at Fredericksburg Convention Center, formerly known as Fredericksburg Expo Center, (2371 Carl D. Silver Pkwy., Fredericksburg, VA 22401) with a reception to follow.
Jud believed in helping anyone and everyone. Gifts in his memory may be sent to: The Fund for Johns Hopkins Medicine, Center for Innovative Medicine, 750 East Pratt Street, 17th Floor, Baltimore, MD 21202 or online: secure.jhu.edu/form/innovate