|Birth: ||Sep. 19, 1922|
|Death: ||Nov. 7, 2001|
St. Louis County
Friday, November 9, 2001
Developers widow dies at age 79
Juanita Adams took over Homer Adams' company in 1983
Alton - While Homer Adams is the name most associated with area land development for the past 50 years, the steady hand of his wife, Juanita, was always close by.
Juanita Adams died Wednesday at the age of 79.
"I just heard about it a few minutes ago, and I'm just sick," Norma Glazebrook said Thursday afternoon.
"I just talked to Juanita last Friday, and she had invited me to spend time with her and the family at Thanksgiving," Glazebrook said. "she had just completed some treatment for cancer and told me she needed about a week and then we should get together. It just shows that you never know."
Juanita Adams became president of H. Adams Development Co. upon the death of her husband in June 1983. Just three months later, the Beltline - a four-mile highway connecting Godfrey to Alton - was renamed Homer Adams Parkway. Adams was responsible for most of the business development along that stretch of road, as well as thousands of acres elsewhere in the Alton-Godfrey area.
Longtime members of New Testament Fellowship Church, Home and Juanita Adams were married November 6, 1946, and they raised four children: Vicky Nemec, Matt Adams, Scott Adams and Carol Stevenson.
"Juanita was Homer's sidekick the whole way through," Glazebrook said. "She was a wonderful wife and supporter. That and raising their children were the most important things to her. Juanita is one person who will really be missed in this town."
The family also was responsible for buying land to develop Alton Square in the late 1970s. They also bought D'Adrian Gardens from the Oblate Fathers in 1956 and bought the Pallisades from American Cyanamid in 1965, leading to the eventual development of the Palisades resort community and Raging Rivers Water Park along the Great River Road.
Most recently, Adams donated the Charles Lindbergh Relay Station to Pride, Inc. for restoration in front of the Godfrey Village Hall.
While driving down the Beltline just four months before Homer's death, Juanita commented to her husband how proud he must be of all his work.
"Some people go through a lifetime and never light a candle," she told him. "You have lit up an entire city."
Friday, November 9, 2001
Godfrey - Juanita E. Adams, 79, died at 10:29 p.m. Wednesday, November 7, 2001, at St. Mary's Health Center in Richmond Heights, Missouri.
A daughter of the late Charles Bert and Mabel Ruth (Whittleman) Ritchey, she was born September 19, 1922, in Alton.
She and her husband, the late Homer M. Adams, developed thousands of acres of land in the Alton area into sites ranging from churches to department stores to homes and restaurants. After the death of her husband, she became chairman of H. Adams Development Company and was involved in Adams Printing, D'Adrian Gardens Orchard and Greenhouses, floral shops, Raging Rivers Waterpark and Adams Development and Construction. During her working career, she raised four children and kept nine sets of books.
Active in numerous organizations, she held offices in the Junior League of Greater Alton, National and Madison County Homebuilders Association and Homer Adams Parkway Association. Her community involvement also included working with the Easter Seals, United Way, Girl Scouts of America, American Heart Association, Republican National Committee, American Cancer Society, Salvation Army and American Red Cross. A charter member of Lockhaven County Club, she was also a member of the St. Louis RCGA and Alton-Wood River Sportsmen's Club.
A dedicated member of New Testament Fellowship Church, she gave generously to her church and was involved in countless causes. She was a supporter of the New Beginnings Crisis Pregnancy Center and most recently donated Charles Lindbergh "Relay Station" to Pride Inc. to preserve a vital piece of Godfrey's history. She also donated land for the Godfrey Village Hall and Homer M. Adams Park and was a staunch supporter of community improvement in Grafton, Godfrey and Alton.
She married Homer M. Adams November 6, 1946, in Alton. He died June 25, 1983.
Surviving are her children and their spouses, Vicky Adams Nemec and Dr. Edward Nemec of Town and County, Missouri, Matt and Susan Adams of Chesterfield, Missouri, Scott and Lori Adams of Alton and Carol Adams Stevenson and David Stevenson of Godfrey; seven grandchildren, Natalie, Chad, Cody, Aaron, Avery, Kim and Becky; and a sister, Alberta Lynn of Godfrey.
Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Sunday at New Testament Fellowship Church in Alton, where the Rev. Gary Carstens will officiate at services at 1 p.m. Monday.
Burial will be private.
Memorials may be given to the New Testament Fellowship Church building fund.
Gent Funeral Home of Alton is in charge of arrangements.
Charles Bert Ritchey (1898 - 1985)
Mabel Ruth Ritchey (1901 - 1991)
Homer Miller Adams (1918 - 1983)
Ruth Alberta Ritchey Lynn (1920 - 2012)*
Juanita E. Ritchey Adams (1922 - 2001)
Valhalla Memorial Park and Mausoleum
Plot: Section 4
Created by: Julie
Record added: Feb 03, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 84435803
Added: Feb. 3, 2012