In Memory of





Obituary for Sarah "Jeannie" Rice (Brinkley)

Sarah Jean Brinkley Rice of Hampstead, NC, passed away on Tuesday, October 31, 2023, in Roanoke, VA. She was born on July 17, 1941, in Clifton Forge, VA.

Sarah is survived by her husband of 57 years, Cyril S. Rice; their daughter, Anne-Renée Rice-Soumeillant and her husband, Max Soumeillant, and their sons, Pierre and André of Princeton, NJ.  She is also survived by her older brothers, Lewis Brinkley and Richard Brinkley of Clifton Forge, VA; brothers-in-law, Gary Rice of Covington, VA and Monty Rice of California; and numerous beloved nieces and nephews.

Sarah was predeceased by her sister, Ruth Ann Mays; her brother, Carl Brinkley; as well as her parents, Lewis M. Brinkley and Elizabeth Hardy Brinkley.

She was known to family members as Sarah and to all her friends as Jeannie. Sarah was a graduate of Clifton Forge High School and the original National Business College of Roanoke, VA. She worked in Roanoke at the Chamber of Commerce, the N&W Railroad and in Cary, NC at the SAS Institute. Sarah and C.S. lived in Roanoke, VA, Buckhannon WV, Wilmington, NC, Corning, NY, and Raleigh NC during their professional years.

Throughout her life she enjoyed gardening, arts and crafts, travel - especially to Europe, needle work and sewing, church committees and especially spending time with Anne-Renee and her family and with her extended family in Virginia. She was a volunteer extraordinaire and known to light up a room with kindness, beauty, humor, and respect for all of God’s creation.

A funeral service will be announced later at the Topsail Presbyterian Church in Hampstead NC, and Sarah’s burial and final resting home will be at the Woodland Union Church near Millboro, VA.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to your local food bank. Online condolences may be shared with the family at

Arrangements by Oakey’s Funeral Service – South Chapel, Roanoke, VA (540) 989-3131.