Obituaries » Eleanor L Grasty

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Eleanor L Grasty

July 18, 1936 – May 1, 2023

Owens Funeral Svcs; Chapel
104 Green Chimney
Ashland, Va 23005
Friday 4 to 8pm
May 12, 2023


Owens Funeral Svcs; Chapel
104 Green Chimney
Ashland, Va 23005
Friday 4PM
May 12, 2023
Mt Hope Baptist Church
5502 Paynes Mill Rd,
Bumpass, VA 23024
Saturday 12pm
May 13, 2023

Eleanor Grasty, the eldest of six children, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on July 18, 1936 to the late Edward and Susie Lewis. At an early age, Eleanor accepted Jesus Christ as her personal Savior and joined Second Baptist Church of Frankford, located in Northeast Philadelphia. A faithful member of Second Baptist Church, she served in many capacities.
Eleanor received her formal education in the Philadelphia Public School System. She continued her education at West Chester State Teachers College (now West Chester University), earning a Bachelor of Science in Education Degree. Her graduate studies were in Educational Psychology at Temple University and in Spanish at the school of Language Studies, Foreign Service Institute, Department of State. During her tenure at West Chester, fraternal organizations were not permitted on campus; therefore, in 1957, Eleanor became a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Gamma Chapter, Temple University.

In 1971, Eleanor was joined in holy matrimony to Kenneth Jefferson Grasty a widower with two small children, Lisa and Michael. In 1973, she and Kenneth adopted a baby girl, whom they named Susan. Simultaneously, Eleanor formally adopted Lisa and Michael. She was a loving and devoted wife and mother. One of her greatest joys in life was becoming a grandmother. “Grammy,” as she was affectionately called, loved to spend time with her grandchildren and spoil them with treats. The love she had for her family was unparalleled.

Eleanor taught for twenty years in the School District of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, then opted for early retirement to accompany her husband abroad upon his Commission as a Foreign Service Officer in the U.S. Department of State Diplomatic Corps. She continued to teach during the overseas and Washington, D.C. tours of her husband, and notably founded the first U.S. Girl Scout Troop while in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. In 1990, Eleanor joined the Foreign Service in her own right, receiving a Certificate in Secretary Statecraft from the U.S. Department of State. She studied and became fluent in Spanish at the Foreign Service Institute.

In 1997, when her husband retired and she subsequently resigned from the Foreign Service, the couple relocated to Louisa County, VA. There, Eleanor served as active member of her mother’s familial home church, Mt. Hope Baptist Church in Bumpass, VA. Eleanor served as a deaconess, member of the Christian Education Committee and the Ways and Means Committee. She was a member of the Newsletter ministry and established the Mt. Hope Library for the use of its members and those in the area. She proudly founded the “Celebration” Choir. Her husband accepted God’s Call and was later installed as Pastor of Zion Grove Baptist Church in Caroline County, VA. Eleanor was equally active serving as a deaconess, Sunday school teacher and a member of the Christian Education ministry. She also established the Zion Grove Newsletter, as its editor and publisher. Eleanor was fondly called “Lady Bug” by her Mt. Hope Church and Zion Grove Baptist Church friends.
An entrepreneurial spirit, Eleanor started two successful businesses during her retirement. As a Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant, she qualified as Team Leader and earned the use of a red 1999 Pontiac Grand Am for her record sales of $16,000 and 16 recruits within seven months. She later went on to reach the Directorship career level. In later years, her love of travel inspired Eleanor to birth PAVA TRAVEL, a home-based travel agency, as an opportunity to book trips for interested parties to locations near and far. One of her fondest memories was a pilgrimage to the Holy Land of Jerusalem with her husband. It was there Eleanor fulfilled her dream of riding a camel, just as her mother had done during her lifetime.

The following quote by Erma Bombeck sums up the life of Eleanor Grasty:
“When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say I used everything YOU gave me.”

She was a woman of many talents, tremendous style, elegance, grace and poise. A generous, kindhearted woman with an infectious laugh, Eleanor was beloved by her family, church members, friends and community. She leaves to cherish her memories a loving and devoted husband of over 50 years Kenneth Grasty, children Lisa Grasty Pearson (Brian), Michael Grasty (Stephanie) and Susan L. Grasty Rand. In addition to her children, “Grammy” will be especially missed by grandchildren Wesley Grasty, Sasha Grasty, Devon Robinson (Michael), Cheyenne Brown (Eric), Earica Grasty, Monica Grasty and great-grandchildren Emma Brown and Levi Brown. Also, to cherish her memories are her only remaining sibling Martin Donald Lewis, numerous nieces and nephews, and a host of cousins and friends.

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