Mary Lois Smith Whitfield Palmer passed away on September 8, 2020. She was born April 11, 1927, to Claude Lee Smith and Alma Mimbs Smith, in Brewton, Georgia. Lois was raised on the Lehman and Beeman Keen Plantation near Brewton and lived her entire life in Laurens County.
She retired from Claxton-Lawrence Ford, where she was employed for over twenty-five years. She was also active in community and civic affairs in Dublin. Among those were the Pilot Club of Dublin and making telephone calls with Life-Line, the Marie Home Demonstration Club, and the Veterans Administration Volunteer Services (VAVS), where she gave countless hours of volunteer service to the veterans. In 1998, Lois was selected as the Senior Citizen of the Year during the St. Patrick’s Festival.
In her early years, Lois was active in her church at Shady Grove Baptist Church. Later she was active at Centenary Methodist and then First United Methodist Church of Dublin where she was a member of the Friendship Sunday School Class and the United Methodist Women (UMW).
Lois married Henry Clayton Whitfield, Jr., (H.C,) in 1945. They had two children, Henry Clayton Whitfield, III, and Mary Anne. After H.C.’s untimely death in 1961, Lois remained a widow and raised her two children through high school and college. She often said, “Dublin, Georgia is the best place in the world to raise children.” After being a widow and single parent for over twenty years, Lois had the good fortune of meeting Hugh Palmer, whom she married in 1982.
Lois was predeceased by her parents, Claude and Alma Smith, her first husband, H.C. Whitfield, Jr., her second husband, Hugh Palmer, her siblings, Evelyn Smith Sutton, Claude Leon Smith, William Elbert Smith, and Maxie Smith Lynn. She is survived by her children, Henry (Debbie) Whitfield of Savannah; Mary Anne (Royden) Peabody of Louisville, Kentucky; and Hugh’s children, Gloria (Earl) Morgan of Dublin; Hughel (Harriett) Palmer of Newnan; Alan (Patsy) Palmer of Dublin; her sister, Patsy (Raymond) Wallace, of Dublin; her brother, Hardy (Rita) Smith of Dexter; her grandson, Mark Vickers Wetherington, Jr., of Hamilton, Montana; Hugh’s grandchildren, Pam (Jeff) Schaade of North Augusta, South Carolina; Patrick (Leslie) Morgan of Evans; Megan (Freeman) Shepard of Dublin; Justin (Michawne) Clark of Suwanee; Emory (Jennifer) Palmer of Newnan; and Will Palmer of Newnan; several great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
The family thanks the staff of Dublin Place for their care and nurturing over many years and Serenity Hospice of Dublin.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the family will have a private graveside service at Dublin Memorial Gardens on Thursday, September 10, 2020, with Dr. Bob Williams officiating. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to First United Methodist Church, 305 Gaines Street, Dublin 31021; Pilot Club of Dublin, P. O. Box 4461, Dublin, Georgia 31040; Serenity Hospice Care, 1022 Hillcrest Parkway, Dublin, Georgia 31021, or the charity of your choice.
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