Nancy Orr Adams died of breast cancer on August 9, 2013 in Ukiah. Known for her zest for the outdoors, impeccable organizational skills, and unwavering ethical compass, Nancy had a rich life filled with family and friendship. Born on September 13, 1941 to Jean and Douglass Orr, MD, Nancy and her brother Steve grew up in Seattle and Bellevue, Washington. She graduated from Bellevue High School in 1959 and Oregon State University in 1964. She married Lee Adams in 1965; their daughter, Jenny, was born in 1969. In 1972 the family moved to Ukiah, where Nancy became involved in community service. The many organizations she served included the League of Women Voters; the Ukiah Valley Association for the Handicapped; the Mendo/Lake Cancer Society; and the Mendocino County Board of Education. In 1985 Nancy earned an MA from the University of San Francisco leading to licensure as a Marriage, Child Therapist. This enabled her to work in private practice; to co-author a book (Life Cycle Counseling) with her father; and to work for Mendocino County Mental Health. In her few moments of leisure, she enjoyed playing tennis, snow-skiing, and mountain climbing. In 1996, Nancy met Tim Chadsey, who became her life partner for the next 17 years up until her death. United by their love of the sea, they spent much of their time together sailing on both East and West Coasts. Over the past several years, Nancy took the greatest delight in her two granddaughters, Frankie Adams-Sternal (age 6) and Edie Adams-Sternal (age 3). As she often said, Frankie and Edie became "the gleams in her eyes," and her love for them was reciprocated by their adoration of their "Nana." Nancy is survived by her daughter, Jenny Adams, her son-in-law, Jeff Sternal, and her granddaughters Frankie and Edie of Northampton, MA. She is also survived by her brother Steve and his wife Diane of Vancouver, WA. She has three nieces: Jodie Orr Vargas (David) and their children Valerie, Lindsey, and Stevie of San Jose, CA; Shannon Orr (Melanie McAllester) of Seattle; and Kim Orr Pasquinelli (Phil) and their son Nicholas of Vancouver, WA. She also knew and loved Tim's children, Tomas, Kristine, and Eric Chadsey, and Tomas's son Cody Chadsey. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Cancer Resource Center, 590 S. Dora, Ukiah, CA 95482 or to Phoenix Hospice, 1 Madrone, Willits, CA 95490. A memorial will be held at Eversole Mortuary on Sunday, August 25 at 2:00 p.m. A Celebration of Nancy's life follows immediately afterwards at the Saturday Afternoon Club located at 107 S. Oak in Ukiah.
Published in Ukiah Daily Journal on Aug. 18, 2013