Thomas Earl Jennings

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The Reverend Thomas Earl Jennings, of Locust Grove, VA, passed away on his 87th birthday, on May 17, 2021, in Reston, VA.

Born in Richmond, VA in 1934, Reverend Jennings graduated from Randolph Macon College and later Duke University before serving as pastor in numerous United Methodist Churches in Virginia. He and his wife Delia retired in Manteo, North Carolina, before eventually returning to Virginia. Reverend Jennings loved the beach, books, needlepoint, and his dogs—but above all, his wife Delia. His enduring romance with her unfolded for decades, from the house he helped to build for their retirement to twilit dances in the Caribbean. His family, friends, and parishioners knew him equally as a spiritual intellectual and also as an irreverent joker, and his stories—wise, authentic, and apt—touched hundreds of lives.

He is survived by his wife, Delia Jennings, and his children by a previous marriage, Theresa Deese, Karen Lorelli (Matt), and Thomas Jennings, Jr.; Delia’s children, Michael Bardzell (Maryellen), Jeffrey Bardzell (Shaowen), Kathy Thomas (Alan), and Kelly Bardzell; and grandchildren Hunter and Drew Lorelli, and Benjamin, Jacob, and Ashley Bardzell.

The family requests in lieu of flowers and gifts that donations be made to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research or the Hospice Foundation of America.