September 22, 1929 - November 21, 2021
Yvonne Marie Ryall, 92, of Springfield, Virginia, passed away on November 21, 2021, from coronary artery disease. She was preceded in death by her first husband Lt. Col. Bob Leroy Gregory, and her second husband George Richard Ryall, Jr. She was the beloved mother of Roberta Anne Cordingley (spouse David M. Cordingley), William David Gregory (spouse Karen Lord Gregory), and step-son Chuck Ryall; aunt of Keith White and Cynthia Brooks; “Grammy” to grandchildren Emily, Noah, Mike, and Cheryl; and “GG” to great-grandchildren Greyson and Lucy. Yvonne was born September 22, 1929, in Oklahoma City, daughter of Jessie Perry White and Linnie Helen Boyd White. She grew up in Oklahoma City, but also shared stories about experiencing pre-electricity life during frequent visits to family farms in rural Oklahoma. After graduating from Central High School in 1947, where she was a proud member of the “Black Skirt Pep Club”, Yvonne attended the University of Oklahoma in Norman. She studied voice with English operatic soprano Dame Eva Turner and earned a Bachelor of Music degree in 1951. While in college, Yvonne married Bob Gregory, who had returned to college from an Army posting in Germany, and began her life as a military wife. The next 20 years were filled with raising a family and maintaining a household in many locations across the US and in Germany. Leisure time found the family visiting mountains for hiking and climbing. Wherever she lived, Yvonne was always active in her church as a choir director, lay leader, vocal soloist, and handbell director. Her faith became a defining touchstone and gave her strength and inner peace throughout her life. Volunteering in scouting became a big part of Yvonne’s life and turned into a profession in the Washington, DC area when she became a professional administrator and trainer with Girl Scouts Nation’s Capital. When Bob died in Vietnam in 1968, Yvonne was responsible for supporting the family and seeing two children through high school and into college. She was a proud member of the Gold Star Wives organization and supported other military service charities. Once her children were in college, Yvonne taught herself the skills needed to build a house in Shawneeland, near Winchester, Virginia. In 1977, She earned a second college degree, in Church Music, from Shenandoah University, and continued her active work as a choir director, vocal soloist, and lay leader in church. She embarked on a new volunteer pathway as a braille transcriber for both language and music through the National Library Service for the blind and print disabled. Yvonne continued as an active braille transcriber into her 90s and treasured the clients that she worked for. She married George Richard Ryall, Jr. in 1981 and they spent many happy years together enjoying friends, combined families, travelling, and caring for each other until Dick’s passing in 1998. In 2005, in her mid-70s, Yvonne moved to Greenspring Village in Springfield, Virginia. She quickly adapted to her new environment, made many close friends, and became involved in lots of new activities. Some of her favorite activities included Wii bowling, bridge and other card games, and bible study. She formed a tone chimes group, played in a recorder ensemble, and was a frequent vocal soloist in the Greenspring Village Chapel. Yvonne also relished being an interviewer and camera operator for the TV station. A laptop computer, iPad, and iPhone became normal tools in her daily activities. Her regular lunch group was a safe harbor within her busy days, becoming even more important as an anchor for social contact when gathering was permissible during the height of the COVID pandemic. A prolific and talented hand quilter, Yvonne always had a large quilt underway and numerous smaller sewing projects for gifts or household decorations. Her quilts are varied and beautiful and her crochet work is delicate and ornate. Pets were an important part of Yvonne’s life. As a 4-year-old, she was introduced to her first mixed terrier, “Pal,” the first of many beloved pets throughout her life. In her late 80s, Yvonne finally decided she did not have the energy to take care of a traditional pet, so bought a large plastic goose appropriately named “Goosie.” She made monthly outfits for her new pet and gamely posed for photographs with Goosie. Family members looked forward to her frequent sharing of these fun pictures. For years, Yvonne made an adventure out of trying a new restaurant every month with her nephew. Even in the later years of her life, she always embraced a rich variety of experiences. International travel was a big part of Yvonne’s life in the military and it continued with a trip to Israel in the 1980s, a trip to Germany and Switzerland with her daughter’s family in 2009, and a trip to India in 2018 for the wedding of one of her grandsons when she was 88 years old. Walking was always Yvonne’s exercise of choice and her days included miles of walking until the last year of her life. As the COVID pandemic protocols changed everyone’s life, Yvonne continued walking a course through her apartment and tried to enjoy it as much as her previous walks along forested paths. Yvonne will be remembered for her cheerful and caring demeanor toward all, an all-encompassing faith, love for her family, and a boundless energy for life. A celebration of Yvonne’s life will be held at Greenspring Village Chapel, 7430 Spring Village Drive, Springfield, Virginia on Sunday, December 12, at 2:00, followed by a reception for family and friends. Contributions in her memory may be made to Habitat for Humanity (https://www.habitat.org). An online space for remembrances is available at https://www.Jeffersonfuneralchapel.com.
Yvonne Marie Ryall, 92, of Springfield, Virginia, passed away on November 21, 2021, from coronary artery disease. She was preceded in death by her first husband Lt. Col. Bob Leroy Gregory, and her second husband George Richard Ryall, Jr. She... View Obituary & Service Information
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