Yvonne Terhune Pinkerton (“Pinky”) passed away on December 25th, 2020, at 92, leaving behind a deep commitment to the arts and to community service. Her biggest legacy, though, is the love she left behind in her family and friends. She urges us to pay it forward in her memory. She is survived by four children: Sam Pinkerton (Laura Walker), Pam Saulter (Len), Brent Pinkerton (Stacy), and Scott Pinkerton (Julie); ten grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.
Pinky was born in Cleveland, Ohio on September 27th, 1928 to Arthur and Myra “Happy” Terhune. She grew up in the Midwest and graduated with a theater degree from Case Western Reserve. She dreamed of acting professionally before she met and married Sam Pinkerton. They moved to Florida in the early ‘60s.
After teaching theater at Winter Park High School in Orlando, Pinky and her husband Sam moved from Orlando to Venice in 1969. She immediately joined Emmanuel Lutheran Church, where she would be a member for over fifty years. Soon after arriving in Venice, she became involved with Venice Theatre in many ways, including as the board president, the founder of the education and outreach department, and as a lifelong theatre guild member.
Venice Theatre was, and would continue to be, one of the places where Pinky felt happiest and most at home. Onstage, backstage, in the parking lot with a bathrobe thrown over her costume, Pinky relished her time there and would always want to linger at the cast meet and greet after each show. She’d pore over the playbills long after she attended the Sunday matinees. Every show she saw there was the best she’d ever seen.
In the 1980’s, she took that love of theater to Venice High School, where she started the theater program and taught drama until 1991.
Pinky’s passion for arts education grew in the 90’s when she returned to Venice Theatre. In 1993, she initiated the Theatre for Young People and Troupe in a Trunk, a volunteer acting group that performed for 10,000 elementary school children every year. Throughout her time as a volunteer, she also started the Theatrefest summer camp program and The Silver Foxes, an adult outreach group.
In 1995, she founded the partnership between Venice Theatre and The Loveland Center. She directed the Loveland Follies, a yearly musical review that supported Loveland students as they gained self- confidence through performing. The Loveland students would become so special to Pinky throughout the years—she would attend rehearsals and every Loveland Follies performance, even after she stepped down as director. Her love of theater and her love of service had merged in a beautiful way—one that was celebrated every time she walked into a Follies rehearsal and the students would greet her by name.
In 2001, she received the American Association of Community Theatre’s “National Spotlight Award” for her contribution to community theater. This highlighted her commitment to enriching the lives of future generations with her love of theater and passion for imagination, self-expression, and joy.
A private family ceremony will be held at Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Venice. In lieu of flowers, please send donations in Pinky’s honor to Venice Theatre (https://venicetheatre.org/contribute/) or The Loveland Center (https://donateloveland.org/v2/)