After Ueshiba Morihei’s passing on April 26, 1969, Virginia decided that it was time to move on and she returned briefly to Tokyo in the aim of arranging her replacement.
This proved unsuccessful and the school ended up without an instructor for about two years, until Ken Cottier was sent by the Aikikai to restart the organization. He founded the Hong Kong Aikido Association, which is still running today.
Virginia returned to the United States. She would continue her pursuit of awareness and centering through meditation, which led her to India, where she learned from a guru for some time.
There she married an Indian businessman and took on the family name of Patel. The couple had a daughter named Shankari.
She went back to Hawaii, where her daughter was born, and trained in aikido but did not teach. While she continued to practice on her own or with like minded friends after she returned to the US, she no longer held any formal aikido position after that.
In 1993 Henry Kono traveled to Los Angeles with his young son and met up with Virginia. They reportedly talked for hours about Aikido and O Sensei and what spiritual insights they had gained into his teachings over the years.
Virginia Mayhew later suffered a stroke. She passed away on October 26th, 2006 at age 77.
Source: Aikido Journal