Tallulah Lester Peterson of Roanoke, Virginia, departed this life on Monday, January 3, 2022.
She was born on May 11, 1931, in Statesboro, Ga., graduated from Statesboro High School and Georgia Southern College (now University). She was a teacher in Savannah, Ga., when she met Charles H. “Pete” Peterson Jr., MD. The two were married in 1960 and were only separated when Dr. Peterson died in 2018. Tallulah and Pete lived in Roanoke, Va., from 1963 until their deaths, after living a short time in Hartford, Conn., and Charlottesville, Va.
Tallulah was a substitute teacher in Roanoke City, Roanoke County, and Salem Public Schools for many years. She played tennis and bridge with the seriousness of a true professional. Once her children were older and had left home, she spent every winter in Luquillo, Puerto Rico, fleeing the dark days of a Roanoke winter for the warmth and sunshine of her tropical paradise. Tallulah could light up a room with her smile, and there was never any doubt when she was unhappy with you. She could talk to anyone and would normally figure out a connection to your family or your friends. Tallulah respected people for their compassion, creativity, and hard work over any social class.
Tallulah was preceded in death by her husband, Charles H. Peterson Jr., and her parents, Sarah Blanks Lester and Malcolm Bernard Lester.
She is survived by her sister, Catherine Lester Lee of Charleston, S.C.; son, Michael S. Peterson of Roanoke, Va.; and daughter, Sara Catherine Peterson Kibler (Jim) of Virginia Beach, Va. Tallulah had three wonderful grandchildren that were the light of her life, Sara Cornelia (Neelie) Kibler of Washington, D.C., Emily Hutchison Kibler, and John Thomas Kibler, both of Virginia Beach, Va. She is also survived by her sisters-in-law, Nancy Stuart Peterson of Somerset, Va. (formerly of Hollins, Va.) and Ann Wyatt Peterson of Mt. Airy, N.C. (formerly of Martinsville, Va.), along with a number of nieces and nephews.
Tallulah lived at Brandon Oaks Nursing and Rehab the final four years of her life and the caretakers around her became like family to her. In addition to the nurses and staff and Brandon Oaks, her family would like to specifically thank Nancy Garrison, Elizabeth Davis, Tonya Ali, and Jennifer Valentine, for the love and care they gave to Ms. Tallulah.
Interment will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, January 8, 2022, at Fair View Cemetery with a memorial service to be held in the spring.
In lieu of flowers, please give to the charity of your choice or plant something in Tallulah’s memory. Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.oakeys.com.