Jeanette Pinnell “Penny” Grainger Adams, who had several connections to Lexington, died June 3, 2017, of metastasized breast cancer soon after moving from Roanoke to Woodstock, Ga.

PENNY ADAMS

Jeanette Pinnell “Penny” Grainger Adams, who had several connections to Lexington, died June 3, 2017, of metastasized breast cancer soon after moving from Roanoke to Woodstock, Ga.

She met her husband, Tom Adams, in Lexington while he was on leave from an Army tour in the Dominican Republic, and they later married in the R.E. Lee Memorial Episcopal Church.

Penny’s mother, the late Eleanor Grainger, was a former teacher in Rockbridge County, and her father, the late Dr. Inslee Grainger, taught at W&L after retiring from the U.S. Navy. Tom’s mother, the late May Davidson Adams, taught at Lexington High School, and his father, the late Dr. Lew Adams, also taught at W&L and for many years was dean of the School of Commerce. The Graingers moved away but always returned to their Jackson Avenue home before retiring to Brandon Oaks, Roanoke.

Born in Bethesda Naval Hospital April 29, 1944, Penny traveled the world with her father and her husband. Her high school years were mostly in France and Germany, and she earned her bachelor’s degree in music at James Madison University and a master’s in reading at Towson University, Md. She was an accomplished pianist who studied at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore. Classical music was her passion, and she maintained a piano studio wherever she lived. (Everywhere that Penny went, her grand was sure to go.)

She was a classroom and music teacher in Petersburg and Dinwiddie County and was a grade school teacher and a reading teacher in underperforming elementary schools for Roanoke City Public Schools. She also was adjunct faculty in the Maryland community college system.

Penny was a devoted homemaker known for her outstanding culinary skills. Her cooking was a delightful blend of Americana with an international flare, as she had lived in the North, South, Midwest and Southwest U.S., as well as Morocco, the Philippines, Hawaii, Bavarian Germany, Rhineland Germany, the French part of Belgium, and the South of France. She loved entertaining in style with fine china, crystal and silver and good food and lots of good wine.

Penny is survived by her husband of 50 years, Tom Adams of Woodstock; son Mike Adams of Roanoke; daughter Meredith “Mimi” Hager and her husband Mark Hager of Woodstock. Also surviving are sisters Eleanor Workman of Richmond and Alice Grainger Gasser of Geneva, Switzerland.

Penny wanted to be remembered as a loving and loyal wife, mother, teacher, friend who had a wonderful life filled with love, happiness and adventure. She never lost her enthusiasm for learning new things — especially music.

As Penny requested, after the autumn leaves have begun to change color, there will be a private burial of her ashes in the Davidson/Adams Family plot in Stonewall Jackson Memorial Cemetery.

Memorial donations may be made to the charity of your choice or the National Breast Cancer Coalition, 1010 Vermont Ave., NW, Suite 900, Washington, DC 20005.

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