Leila Marchman Smith Fulford
Leila Marchman Smith Fulford, beloved wife and mother passed away at home on Oct. 13, 2020. James H. “Jim” Fulford, Leila’s husband of 65 years, preceded her in death on July 21, 2020.
Leila was born in Eastman, Georgia, to Mary Ella and William Bradford Smith, Jr., and spent her childhood in Dublin, Georgia, graduating from Dublin High School where she lettered in tennis and basketball, and was also a cheerleader. As a child she was given the nickname “Little Honey” due to her sweetness and beauty and is still known as “Aunt Honey” to her myriad of nieces and nephews.
After high school, Leila attended Georgia Teachers College (now Georgia Southern University), where she obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Education. She was employed as one of the first female business instructors at Troup County Technical College before working for The Callaway Foundation, where she retired in 2000 after 32 years of service.
Leila lived in LaGrange for over 60 years and had been an active member of LaGrange First United Methodist Church since 1959. She recently enjoyed the lawn chair services at LaGrange 1st UMC, and was so happy to see her fellow church members again following months of social-distancing due to Covid-19.
After retirement Leila discovered a love of gardening and was well-known for her beautiful flower gardens and floral arrangements, often sharing with friends and the Church. She would often entertain neighbors’ children and grandchildren in the garden, passing on her love of gardening to others. She was talented in many areas, including sewing and decorating. As the matriarch of her family, she hosted Christmas for the family every year, and enjoyed socializing with neighbors and friends in LaGrange. Besides working in her gardens, she was a prolific reader and worked crossword puzzles daily. Like Jim, Leila loved the Georgia Bulldogs and watched every Bulldogs football game. She also was a tennis and golf enthusiast and followed the Atlanta Braves.
Leila is preceded in death by her parents, her sister Sheryll Tiller, and husband Jim Fulford. She is survived by a daughter and son-in-law, Sydney and Kevin Conner of Boise, Idaho; a sister and brother-in-law, Cindy and Ben Brown of Covington, Georgia; a brother, Brad Smith, of Longs, South Carolina; and many loving nephews and nieces.
A private family service will be held at First United Methodist Church Columbarium with a memorial service for both Jim and Leila to be held at a later date.
Friends wishing to remember Leila may do so by sending a memorial to the First United Methodist Church, 401 Broad Street, LaGrange, Georgia 30240. Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.higginslagrangechapel.com.
Higgins Funeral Home at Hunter Allen Myhand, 506 Hill Street LaGrange, 706-884-5626.