Virginia Smart McIlhenny
Virginia Smart McIlhenny
  • March 6, 1925 - August 19, 2017
  • New Orleans, Louisiana

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Virginia Smart McIlhenny, beloved member of the New Orleans community, died at home on August 19th with loving family at her side. She was born in 1925, the daughter of Anne Buchanan Smart and Robert Smart. She graduated from The Louise S. McGehee school and attended Newcomb College. In 1944, she married Edmund McIlhenny, who predeceased her in 1991.

Mrs. McIlhenny spent her life in service to her family and friends and to her community. She served as member and president of the Junior League of New Orleans and the Garden Study Club. She was the founder and board president of the Nursery School for Preschool Blind Children, the president of the board of the Cottage School for hearing-impaired children, and president of the board of the Protestant Children's Home, president of the Parents' League of The Louise S. McGehee School, and on served on the boards of Newman School, and other civic, educational, and social organizations.

In addition to her husband, Mrs. McIlhenny was predeceased by her sister Elizabeth Smart Schneidau. She is survived by her children: Edmund McIlhenny (Pam); Anne McIlhenny Gardiner (Robert); Louise Westfeldt McIlhenny (Hugh Riddleberger); Chaffe McIlhenny (Bonnie), and grandchildren: Cassie McIlhenny Ojeda (Rick); Virginia Nugent (John); Mary Eliza Ankenbauer (Stephen); Marsh Gardiner (Teressa); Avery Weld Gardiner; Katharine M. G. Tucker (Scott); Elizabeth H. G. Webster (Cliff); Emily M. R. Blackwell (Scott); Sarah M. R. Jones (Chandler); James M. Riddleberger; Matthew H. McIlhenny; Ethan H. McIlhenny (Carrie); and 19 great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.

The family wishes to thank Dr. Robert Miles, who cared for Virginia so lovingly and so well, and also the nurses and staff of Mercer's Way Lambeth House for their warmth and professionalism.

Services will be held at Trinity Church at 10 AM on Tuesday, August 22, with visitation at the church beginning at 9 AM. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to The Louisiana Children's Museum, The Louise S. McGehee School, or Lambeth House.