OBITUARY: Virginia Ruth Priestley Lamb


Virginia Ruth Priestley Lamb, 93, resident of Columbia, passed away on Saturday, September 23, 2023, at Maury Regional Medical Center surrounded by her family.

Born September 9, 1930, in Memphis, Tennessee, she was the daughter of the late John Hiram Priestley and the late Nora Davis Priestley.

She attended Memphis City schools and was the Valedictorian of her graduating class at Memphis State College (presently University of Memphis) and continued on to get her Master’s degree. Mrs. Lamb taught 3rd grade in Memphis City School systems at Rozelle and Colonial Elementary.

On December 22, 1954, she married the love of her life, Dr. William Bryant Lamb at Union Avenue Church of Christ in Memphis. They were married for 48 years at the time of his death on November 21, 2003. They attended Union Avenue Church of Christ/Woodland Hills Church of Christ where Bill served as an Elder for over 30 years with Virginia by his side. Together they raised their children John Houston Lamb and Maribeth Lamb.

Virginia joined the entire family in Bill’s dental practice as the Office Manager in 1981 until Bill’s retirement. In 1999, they moved to Columbia, Tennessee and attended Graymere Church of Christ. Virginia was known for her love of God, family and friends and truly had a kind, gentle, and generous demeanor that attracted people to her.

Survivors include her son, Dr. John (Micki) Lamb of Memphis; daughter, Maribeth (Dr. Tim) Gordon of Columbia; grandchildren, Dr. Will (Mollee) Gordon, Jennifer (Micah) Barnes, William Lamb; and great-granddaughter, Caroline Virginia Gordon.

In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by her sister, Elizabeth Posey.

Funeral services will be conducted Thursday at 2:30 P.M. at Oakes & Nichols Funeral Home with John Vaughan and Andrew Phillips officiating. Burial will follow in Polk Memorial Gardens. The family will visit with friends at 12:00 P.M. until service time at the funeral home.

Active pallbearers will be family and friends.

The family suggests memorials to Columbia Academy, 1101 West 7th Street, Columbia, TN 38401, Timothy Hill Children’s Ranch, 298 Middle Road, Riverhead, NY 11901 or Graymere Church of Christ, 1320 Trotwood Avenue, Columbia, TN 38401.

Condolences may be extended online at


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