Floral 21
Official Obituary of

Mary Lou Gerhart Childress

August 25, 1930 ~ August 7, 2023 (age 92) 92 Years Old

Mary Lou Gerhart Childress Obituary

Mary Lou Gerhart Childress, 92, died peacefully August 7, 2023 in Naples, Florida. She was born August 25, 1930 in Lawrenceville, Illinois, the daughter of Dolly Alene Lindsay Gerhart and Charles Isaac Gerhart. Her family had lived in the area for many generations.

She was a 1948 graduate of Lawrenceville High School, where she was one of two girls in Chemistry and Physics classes. Mary Lou received a diploma in nursing from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. During her nursing career, she worked at Barnes Hospital in St Louis; Lawrence County Memorial Hospital; George Washington University Hospital in Washington, DC; at a private medical office in Coral Gables, Florida; and as a stewardess-nurse on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. She married Richard H. Childress on June 1, 1958, and supported his career throughout her married life. During her lifetime, she maintained friends from all the locations she lived, including also Arlington Heights, Illinois; Ballwin, Missouri; Indianapolis, Indiana; Simsbury, Connecticut; Akron, Ohio; Durham, North Carolina; Bonita Springs, Florida; Gainesville, Florida; and Ft. Myers, Florida.

She loved gardenias, warm, sunny climates, and music. She excelled in vocal performance beginning with church solos as a grade school child. Throughout her life, she played the piano, sang, and was a member of various Presbyterian church choirs, as well as the St. Cecelia Choral Society in Akron, Ohio. She was a past member of the Gainesville, Florida chapter of P.E.O., the philanthropic women’s organization.   

In addition to her husband and parents, she was predeceased by her eldest daughter, Marjorie Alene Delatour Crawford; infant daughter; and grandson, Walker Childress Delatour. She leaves to mourn her loss, her brother, Robert L. Gerhart of Conroe, Texas; daughter, Lindsay Childress-Beatty and husband, Paul C. Beatty of Kensington, Maryland; and son, Richard K. Childress and wife, Raimonda of Naples, Florida, along with grandchildren, William C. Delatour; Matthew, Isabella and Connor Childress; Preston and Campbell Beatty; and Doroteja and Theodore Bubulis, as well as nephews, James Griffiths and wife, Patricia; Robert A. Gerhart and wife, Sarah; and Stewart Gerhart and wife, Caroline.  

A service in her honor will be conducted Monday, August 21, 2023 at 11:00 am CDT at the Emmons-Macey & Steffey Funeral Home in Lawrenceville, Illinois. Immediately following the service, she will be laid to rest next to her husband and infant daughter at the Lawrenceville City Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to a deserving charity.

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Funeral Service
August 21, 2023

11:00 AM
Emmons-Macey & Steffey Funeral Home
1303 12th Street - P.O. Box 564
Lawrenceville, IL


A Deserving Charity


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