Virginia Marmande Lee Powers, 89, went to be with the Lord Monday, Oct. 28, 2013, at her home in Lafayette.
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Visitation will be from 9 a.m. until funeral time Saturday at St. Rita Catholic Church in Harahan. A Mass of Christian burial will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the church, with burial in Lake Lawn Park Cemetery in New Orleans. The Rev. Joseph Krafft will officiate.
She is survived by her daughters, Cheryl Lee Evans and husband, Taylor Evans, of Lafayette, Joan Assey and husband, Jim Assey, of Columbia, S.C., and Collette Simmons and husband, Corky Simmons, of Williamsburg, Va.; son, Marc Powers and wife, Katharine Powers, of Johns Island, S.C.; brothers, Marvin, Billy, and Burt Marmande, all of Houma; sisters, Marion Doucet, of Lafayette, and Pat Trahan, of Harahan; grandchildren, Beth Evans Aucoin, Bryan Evans, Greg Barbee, Kimberly Barbee Ostrander, Jennifer Barbee, Stephen Barbee, James Assey, Elizabeth Assey Funderburk, Marc Powers Jr., and Kendra Powers; and many great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Marie Antoinette Marmande and Marcelin Marmande; first husband, Ed Lee; second husband, Raymond Jackson Powers; son, Robert "Bob" Lee; and daughter, Diane Powers Owen.
Pallbearers are Greg Barbee, James Assey, Dr. Hosea A. Doucet, Marc Powers, Ron Matthews, Pat Marmande, Steven Marmande and Ben Marmande.
Virginia, known lovingly by family and friends as "Dinky", was born Nov. 25, 1923, in Bayou Dularge on St. Michel Plantation, the first child of Marceline and Marie Antoinette Marmande. She was the oldest of six children and grew up during the Depression on her family's sugar cane and dairy farm. She attended boarding school in Chatawa, Miss., for two years and graduated from Lorton Prepatory School in Houma. Upon graduating from high school, she attended Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, and graduated in 1945.
Virginia met Ed Lee in 1944, and they wed before his departure into World War II. Upon his return from the war, they started their family in Ruston and eventually settled in New Orleans, where they started, and she became President of Lee Tractor Company. She was widowed in 1966 and married Raymond Jackson Powers, of Pickens, S.C., in 1969. They eventually settled in Mandeville, retired there and enjoyed a wonderful life on the Northshore. They were married until his death in 2000.
Virginia was a devout Catholic all of her life and her faith was lived out in the many ways she served others. She was a retreat captain at the Cenacle Retreat House in Metairie, for 40 years. She delivered Meals on Wheels for many years in Mandeville, and she served in the Hospice program in St. Tammany Parish for many years.
Her work ethic and positive outlook on life were evident in the many relationships she kept with family and friends. She enjoyed traveling the world, and made hundreds of friends across the globe and stayed in touch with many of them up until her death. She had a gracious and engaging personality that made people from all walks of life feel comfortable. She will be missed.
The family would like to extend special thanks to her loving caregivers, Belinda Flowers and Shirley Ronsonnet for their love, care and support during the past three years.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Cenacle Sisters, 513 Fullerton Parkway, Chicago, IL 60614.
Lake Lawn Metairie Funeral Home in New Orleans is in charge of arrangements.
Published in Houma Today & The Daily Comet from Oct. 30 to Nov. 1, 2013