Ginny Sorrell (Oliver)
GINNY LYNN OLIVER SORRELL
Ginny Lynn Oliver Sorrell, 69, celebrated her homecoming with her Lord surrounded by family on August 25th in Virginia Beach. She is survived by her mother, Rosalind Oliver of Virginia Beach; husband, Dr. Michael “Ron” Sorrell of Virginia Beach; son, Michael Sorrell, Jr., and his wife, Paris Sorrell of Alexandria, VA; grandson, Robert “Robbie” Sorrell of Alexandria, VA; brother, Ervin “Buddy” Oliver, Jr., and his wife, Della Oliver of Virginia Beach, and their children, Jason Oliver of Norfolk, VA, and Ellen Dickerson of Virginia Beach; and brother-in-law, Richard Sorrell, and his wife, Sherry Sorrell of Brownsboro, AL. She is preceded in death by her father, Ervin Brantley Oliver, Sr., of Virginia Beach.
Ginny was an honor graduate and president of the Class of 1967 at Woodrow Wilson High School, in Portsmouth, VA, where she met her soulmate and husband Ron of 46 years. She later attended Old Dominion University’s Darden College of Education and earned her BS (’71) and MS (’74) with honors in Early Childhood Education, preparing her for her life’s calling—teaching.
In 1971, Ginny began her chosen profession in earnest with the Portsmouth City Schools, teaching at Highland Biltmore Elementary School. That same year, Ginny organized and helped found an early-childhood education center at her church, Simonsdale Presbyterian. Forty-seven years later, Simonsdale Presbyterian Preschool continues to educate young children in the community. Active all her life in the Presbyterian Church, she most recently has been a member of Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church of Princess Anne in Virginia Beach, where she served as Moderator of Presbyterian Women.
After teaching at ODU’s early childhood demonstration center, Ginny next accepted a job as an assistant professor in the Department of Education at Davis and Elkins College in Elkins, West Virginia. At D&E, she taught courses in early-childhood and elementary education, supervised student teachers, acted as a consultant and liaison between the College and the Randolph County Public Schools, and in her limited spare time, served as a youth group adviser for Davis Presbyterian and Beverly Presbyterian Churches.
In 1976, she, along with her husband Ron, moved to Fairfax County, VA, and they both spent the next 27 years as public-school teachers in service to the Commonwealth of Virginia. She taught at a number of schools in Fairfax County: Holland Meadows Elementary School, Fort Belvoir Elementary School, West Springfield Elementary School, Terra Centre Elementary School, Lake Braddock Secondary School, and Robinson Secondary School. During her summer breaks, Ginny co-founded an educational consulting agency, “Sound Reading Associates,” which pioneered teaching methods and techniques for transliterating and recording textbooks for children with reading challenges. In the pre-computer and technology age, this was a novel idea. Ginny received numerous teaching accolades, including recognition as Fairfax County Teacher of the Year. She retired from the Fairfax County Public School System in 2004, residing with Ron in Virginia Beach and Charlottesville.
To all those who knew her, Ginny was the “life of the party.” She did everything 110%, whether dancing, working a room, gesticulating or serving others. When not in the classroom, Ginny enjoyed relaxing by the water and, more recently, playing with her grandson Robbie. Ginny spent her later years helping to care for her parents in a private adult care home, which led her to become an advocate for compassionate elder care as an officer in PACHOMES Association.
Ginny was an angel on earth to her husband and son, as well as, friends and family. She’s now an angel in heaven.
A service and reception celebrating her extraordinary life and spirit are scheduled for 2PM on Sunday, September 2nd, at Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church of Princess Anne, 2228 Princess Anne Road, Virginia Beach, VA 23456. The Reverend Libby Rollins will officiate the ceremony. All are welcome to attend.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church of Princess Anne Memorial Fund (https://www.gcpcpa.org/how-to-give) or Simonsdale Presbyterian Preschool, which Ginny founded in 1971 (http://simonsdalepc.org/wp/?page_id=190088). The family would like to thank Dr. Susan Ring and staff and caregivers of Virginia Oncology Associates, Personal-Touch Home Care, Bioscrip Infusion Services, and Sentara Princess Anne Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit.
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