Virginia “Ginny” Panzer (née Wallace) died on February 6, 2021 in Summit, NJ. Ginny was born on January 19, 1934 in Brooklyn, NY. She went to Cornell University where she met her husband, Jerome “Jerry” Panzer, a PhD candidate. They married at the beginning of Ginny’s senior year and by the time she graduated, she was pregnant with her daughter Lorrie. Lorrie and her siblings, Robert and Ellen, all went to Cornell as well (although Lorrie was the only one to “graduate” twice, having been in the womb during Ginny’s graduation). Thus began a life-long love of Cornell and service to the university.
Ginny had several careers, starting out as a nursery school teacher and later becoming a highly successful real estate agent. She then worked for a real estate developer that built senior citizen homes, where she dealt with government agencies to get approval for the facilities.
Despite a very full career, Ginny also had a strong sense of civic responsibility and volunteered her time in several worthy ways. For Cornell, she tirelessly raised funds for the University, interviewed high school applicants, wrote the class column for the university magazine, organized reunion activities and local alumni events, and helped however she was called upon. She was a class officer and a member of the University’s Board of Governors. In 2011, she was the recipient of the President Emeritus Frank Rhodes Exemplary Service Award given to exemplary alumni.
Ginny also served as Treasurer for the League of Women Voters of New Jersey, helped with “patterning” children with neurological disabilities like cerebral palsy, was on the board of Congregation B’nai Israel and active on many committees, and spent more than 40 years volunteering for Hadassah, eventually receiving the honor of being named Woman of the Year.
Ginny had a slew of friends who thought of her as family and she and Jerry had a very active social life. Jerry passed away after 33 wonderful years of marriage and shortly after, Ginny met Hal Wiener, also recently widowed with two grown sons and began a beautiful relationship that also lasted 33 years until her death. Hal fit seamlessly into the Panzer family and is considered “Pop Pop” by Ginny’s grandchildren. Ginny and Hal melded their social circles and had even more full lives than before.
Ginny had a good life and asked that her headstone read “She laughed. She loved. She lived.” She is survived by her children Lorrie Panzer Rudin and her husband Ken and son Michael; Robert Panzer and his wife Doreen and children Ethan, Hannah, and Sophie; and Ellen Panzer Roer and her son Jaden. She also is survived by her nephew Glenn Guior and her nephew Rick Guior and his wife Barbara and their children Sonia and Alex as well as Hal’s children Marc and Robin Wiener, and Beni and Tzila Gavrielli and their families.
Donations in her memory can be made to:
• giving.cornell.edu please select one or more areas of giving: Cornell Botanic Garden (under option for “campus”) or Panzer Family Scholarship (under option “other,” please type it in)
• mail checks payable to Hadassah, to the attention of Michelle Hubertus at 1 Taft Drive, Short Hills, NJ 07078 (in memo portion of check write Ginny Panzer)