Virginia Jean Grace, 89 of Shawnee, died Dec. 9

Virginia “Jean” Grace, otherwise known as ‘Nana’ to those who loved her most, left this earth on Dec. 9, 2020, to enter into the arms of Jesus after a long, well fought battle with breast cancer.

Jean was born July 5, 1931, in Hays, Kansas to Hurchel F. and Nellie Mabel (Abernathy) Ham.

She graduated in 1949 from Wynnewood High School, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Oklahoma Baptist University with a degree in music theory. She had a beautiful voice and would often break into song without prompting, usually making up her own words. She loved music of all kinds, but especially Hymns and Gospel music. She also liked to jitterbug and could ‘dance a jig’ with her grandkids, showing them the moves that were popular when she was a young girl. Her youthfulness and joy for life were contagious. She would often give a big smile and a wink, followed by “well Heavenly Days.” She always said “love you honey bunch,” and more specifically, love you “sugar lump,” a term of affection reserved for Bob, Linda or Jay. That was her trademark, joy, laughter and love without condition.

Jean worked at Grace and Sons Appraisal Service, a local Shawnee business started by she and her husband Dick almost 40 years ago.  She was an integral part of its success and as a people person, loved getting into the community and building relationships more than anything. Customers, clients and employees all loved her and enjoyed her presence. She actively worked until age 86 and only stopped then due to declining health.

Jean had a close walk with the Lord and never shied away from telling others about Him and gave Him all glory and praise whenever possible, in every situation. It was that love for Jesus that made her an awesome Falls Creek counselor for many years, as well as a Bible Study leader for young ladies across the state. She mentored and discipled many throughout the years, leaving a lasting impression and mark on each of them.

The only thing that rivaled her love for Jesus were her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Going to Papa and Nana’s house was something they all looked forward to. You could count on brownies and fishing, jumping hay bales in the summer, and a tree swing that you needed a ladder to climb onto! She loved family and her grandkids were the highlight of her life!

She was preceded in death by her parents.

Jean is survived by her husband of 55 years, Dick Grace; children: Linda McClain and husband Mark of Oklahoma City, Jay Duke and wife Dana of Prague, Bob Grace and wife Darla of Edmond, and Allynn Grace of Midwest City; ten grandchildren: Jessica, Brent, Aaron, Audrey, Ryan, Graham, Liv, Levi, Noah, and Nicole; six great-grandchildren: Celine, Wyatt, Jaycenn, Larramie, Kylah and Loyal; brother: Franklin Ham and wife Pat; two sisters: Wanda Manatoa and Peggy Ham; brother-in-law: Bob Grace and wife Melody; many nieces and nephews, who she loved very much, as well as numerous friends.

Our hearts are broken that she’s gone, but we rejoice in knowing that she’s been made whole and set free from any afflictions this world may have put on her. She loved us well, and we adored her. “We honor her for all that her hands have done.” Proverbs 31:31

Jean will lie in state at Walker Funeral Service on Saturday, Dec. 12, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday, Dec. 13 from 1 to 5 p.m.

A small family graveside service will be held at 2 p.m., Monday, Dec. 14, at Oaklawn Cemetery in Wynnewood under the direction of Walker Funeral Service.

Posted online on December 11, 2020