Rebecca McDonald Currence
Rebecca McDonald Currence
  • June 7, 1940 - November 17, 2017
  • New Orleans, Louisiana

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Rebecca McDonald Currence, a longtime volunteer, died Friday (Nov. 17) at Ochsner Medical Center of complications of a fall. She was 77.

Born Mary Rebecca McDonald and known to all as Becky, Mrs. Currence was born in Lenoir, N.C., on June 7, 1940. She graduated from Lenoir High School and from Wake Forest University. She majored in political science and was active in politics; she was statewide secretary of Young Democrats. She also sang in the Wake Forest Touring Choir and worked on the yearbook and campus newspaper.

She married Richard Morrison Currence on July 8, 1962, and moved to New Orleans, where she taught for 13 years at Marjorie Walters School for Gifted Children and Sam Barthe School after teaching for a year in North Carolina.

Mrs. Currence was also an active fundraiser, working at the Isidore Newman School before becoming executive director of the Louisiana Museum Foundation.

After Hurricane Katrina struck, Mrs. Currence became a member of the Executive Committee of Women of the Storm, an organization that made three trips to Washington, D.C., to persuade lawmakers to visit New Orleans and see the storm’s devastation so they would understand the need for federal help for the area’s recovery. After the BP oil spill, the group’s reach extended to encompass the Gulf Coast; women from Texas, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida joined the New Orleans contingent for a trip to Washington to stress the importance of federal help in cleaning up after the environmental disaster and restoring the coastline.

She also was chairwoman of the board running Longue Vue House and Gardens.

Survivors include her husband, Richard Morrison Currence; two sons, John McDonald Currence (Bess) of Oxford, Miss., and Richard Morrison Currence Jr. (Mathilde) of New Orleans; a sister, Phyllis Cheryl McDonald of Charlotte; a grandson, John (Jack) McDonald Currence II of New Orleans; and three granddaughters, Lucille Caliste Currence and Frances Villere Currence, both of New Orleans, and Mary Molloy (Mamie) Currence of Oxford.

Relatives and friends are invited to attend a memorial service at Trinity Episcopal Church, 1329 Jackson Avenue in New Orleans, on Monday, November 20, 2017 at 12 noon. A visitation will be held at the church beginning at 11:00AM. In lieu of flowers, please feel free to make a donation to the charitable organization of your choosing.

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