Annie Mae Vance, Nassau correction officer, dies at 72

Annie Mae Vance, one of the earliest Nassau Annie Mae Vance, one of the earliest Nassau County Sheriff woman correction officers, died Wednesday, May 21, 2014, at South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside. She was 72.

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Annie Mae Vance, one of the earliest Nassau County sheriff woman correction officers, died May 21 at South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside.

She was 72 and lived in Roosevelt.

Vance had been a Hempstead Village meter maid before beginning 23 years of work at the East Meadow jail, from which she retired in 2000.

County officials said Vance, who was hired in 1977, may have been the county's second female correction officer.

Born in Ochlocknee, Georgia, she spent most of her adult life in Roosevelt. She married Pete Vance in 1975, but he died a few years later, the family said.

A high school graduate, she earned an associate degree from Nassau Community College in the early 1980s, the family said.

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"She was known for being a very generous woman who actively supported people in just about any way it was needed -- and without asking for anything in return," said her goddaughter, Nicole Robinson of Hempstead.

Vance was part of a social group of friends dubbed "Ladies in Pink," which gave an annual "Dinner on the Lawn" party attended by 500 to 800 guests, many of them prominent. The parties at her home took place for 25 years, the last in 2007.

"She loved hosting these events, as well as smaller ones for family and friends," said her friend and fellow pink lady Betty Cross, who also is Hempstead school board president.

Larry Winslow, Vance's life partner, said of their relationship: "There were no arguments and no fights, ever."

Vance was active at Faith Baptist Church in Hempstead.

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She is survived by a daughter, Sheila Faye Simmons of Dallas; a brother, James Harris of Cairo, Georgia; sisters Christine Davenport of Roosevelt, Evelyn Harris of Hempstead, Inell Crawford of West Palm Beach, Florida, and Coree Todd of Miami; and three grandchildren.

The service was held Friday night at the Hempstead church. The burial will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at Greenfield Cemetery in Uniondale.

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