Leesburg, VA- Mary Morrell Smith, 93, passed away on November 30, 2020 at INOVA Loudoun Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Leesburg, Va., from COVID-19. She is survived by her children, Steven L. Redgate and wife, Dianne Clendaniel; Catherine W. Riley, and husband, Andrew Riley; and Daniel O. Redgate and wife, Margaret Beavers; and her seven beautiful grandchildren: Anna and Molly Redgate; Matthew and Julia Riley; and, Isabella, Miles and Porter Redgate. Her greatest joy was being with her family, especially for the gatherings at Christmas — her favourite time of year.
Mary was born in New York City and grew up on Long Island with her parents, Frank and Margaret Smith, and her siblings: Barbara, Calvin, Nancy and Margaret (Jo). She shared many funny and warm-hearted family childhood stories of summers spent in the cottages at the sound in Riverhead and later in Rangeley, Maine. After showing an affinity for music at a young age, Mary went on to graduate with a Music Education degree from Potsdam College and taught music in schools and privately for decades after, bringing her love of music to students ranging from nursery school to college.
Mary eventually settled in Pittsburgh to raise a family with her husband of 30 years, Dr. Edward S. Redgate, from 1961- 2004. In her later years, she moved to Leesburg, VA near her daughter, Catherine, and had a lovely condo at Landsdowne Woods (formerly known as Leisure World). There, she made great friends who were a constant source of fun, laughter and camaraderie. She served on the Board of Directors for the Riverbend building in her community and performed the role of treasurer. Our family is so grateful for the support of these friends, especially in Mary’s last years,
Mary was passionate about her family, music, poetry, and creative writing. She was an avid reader and preferred non-fiction to satisfy her natural inquisitiveness for learning about and understanding people. Mary was an early childhood expert through her undergraduate and graduate studies as well as her role as a pre-school director in Pittsburgh. Families of her students often sought her calm, insightful guidance on raising children.
Mary was a source of wisdom to all of her family and she always thought carefully about matters. We remember and laugh about so many of her famous and most quoted phrases amongst family members. One of them was, “Don’t forget to play!” We will, even in the midst of the COVID pandemic, in honour of Mary.
Due to COVID restrictions, a celebration of her life will be held at a later date. Mary will be buried at Evergreen Cemetery in Rangeley, Maine, near her beloved sister, Jo Davenport and her brother-in-law, Skeet Davenport.
Please share memories and kind thoughts in her Book of Memories at www.wilesrc.com. Cremation care and Memorial Services are being cared for and provided by the Wiles Remembrance Center: Adams~McFarlane Chapel, 137 Farmington Falls Road, Farmington.