Judy G. D'Arville, a resident of Asheville, passed away, at home, in the early morning hours of September 21, 2013, at the age of 72. Her daughter, Jennifer Colacino; grandson Maxwell Colacino, both of San Antonio, TX; and, her sister Ramona Spector, of Malibu, CA, were at her side. Ms. D'Arville had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2009 and had been in remission until a routine MRI discovered the recurrence of the disease in June of this year.
Born, Judy Garland Skaggs in New Madrid County, MO on March 17, 1941 (St. Patrick's Day), Ms. D'Arville had been a resident of Western North Carolina since her move from Ft. Lauderdale, FL to Brevard, NC in 1975 with her young family. Over the years, she became a regular face at The Wedge & Keg, owned by close friends William & Sara Jane Moser (both deceased), where her flare for holiday basket arrangements became something of a tradition. When not whipping up holiday treats, she also wrote the popular weekly humorist column "NOBODY'S PERFECT" for the Hendersonville Times News for almost 15 years; earning her the moniker, "the Erma Bombeck of WNC" by her many loyal readers.
In 1991, she began what would be an 18 year career at the prestigious Asheville School, where she became well-known to faculty, staff and students for her impeccable style, bawdy-infectious laugh, razor sharp wit, and sultry voice, while working in the External Affairs Offices, Deans Office and Admissions. She retired in 2009, but occasionally would lend her well known voice to answering the phones in the front office, much to the delight of anyone who happened to get her on the phone.
Throughout her life, Ms. D'Arville was well known for her stylish home which always seemed photo shoot ready for either Home & Garden or Southern Living. She loved gardening where little items of whimsy could always be found amongst her plants and flowers. Besides being a writer, she also painted, using many mediums such as tissue paper and shellac. When not painting, she was also an avid photographer, collector of seashells, ocean glass, and a lifetime lover of the beach.
Yet, her greatest joy, besides her family, was the heart of a chef which beat so fully within her chest. Her love of cooking & baking was legendary and always drew eager guests to her table. As her daughter, Jennifer said, "She was the original Martha Stewart, before the world even knew what that meant."
In keeping with her love of the ocean, Ms. D'Arville will be cremated and her ashes spread off the Pacific coast at Mendocino and the Amalfi coast of Italy. A Celebration of Life is planned to honor Ms. D'Arville at the Asheville School on the evening of October 26th, 2013. In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully requests donations to be made in the name of Judy G. D'Arville to any of the following organizations: Hospice Care Partners of Asheville -http://www.carepartners.org
; Pancreatic Cancer Action Network -http://www.pancan.org
; or Cancer Care of WNC - http://cancercareofwnc.com.
Condolences may be made online at www.AshevilleMortuaryServices.com