I was shocked at learning the news of Penny's passing Monday, 10 Dec 2012. In the days since her passing, I am still saddened to learn of her death.
I got to know Penny back in 1996 after she began her well-regarded Turn For The Judges pageant website. She was a wonderful resource for so many pageant fans, including myself, who really appreciated her hard work in updating the website on a large variety of pageants during the year.
I had the good fortune of meeting Penny in person the couple times I was able to travel to Texas. I enjoyed staying at her home while her husband Bob and I played with their dog Gus. When she invited me into the spare room that I was to stay for the night, I was so impressed with the large amount of pageant program books that she collected throughout the years. I could barely sleep that night in that room as I kept looking through and reading all of the program books that she had collected, including some that I had sent her over the many years.
For some folks, they do not realize that Penny's website, Turn For the Judges, which began in the 1990s, was one of the very earliest pageant websites on the Internet... and it remains today as one of the most visible outlets for pageant news for people around the world.
Back in July of 1997, Penny was surprised to learn that I had watched the Miss Texas (America) pageant live from Fort Worth via satellite up here in Wisconsin. Little did Penny or Devon know at the time as Devon competed for the state title, that their biggest pageant fan was watching it all live up here in Wisconsin and cheering them on all the way. Penny never forgot that and in the years since, she made sure to send me Texas tv alerts so I could watch televised pageants up here in Wisconsin.
I know that when Penny arrived at the pearly gates Monday night, she was ready to "Turn for the Judges" in Heaven.....and was crowned by God. Just like in pageants, only the best get crowns, and Penny was one of the very best.
God bless you Penny....all of your pageant family will never forget you, and nor shall I."
In lieu of flowers, Penny's family has set up a memorial fund through PayPal as a way to offset the cost of her funeral arrangements. For those interested, she was buried at Forest Park Westheimer cemetery in Houston, Texas. On her joint tombstone with her husband he has an Ohio State University 'block O' and she has a pageant crown.
Donations to the memorial fund can be made via PayPal to firstname.lastname@example.org
Read the eulogy delivered at Penny's memorial services.