Mary Kemp Parent, age 91, passed away on April 25th, 2013 at her home in Denham Springs, LA. GiGi as she was known to her great grandchildren and great great grandchildren had the love and respect of her family and friends. She was born on November 13, 1921 in Killian, LA, the middle of three children to Rose Murray Kemp and Clarence Burton Kemp. Education was very important to Mary as she recognized early in life that it was the key to reaching the lofty goals she had set for herself. She received her BA degree from Southeastern LA College, her MSW degree from LSU and her DSW from Columbia. She was one of the true pioneers of community mental health in Baton Rouge, having worked at the Baton Rouge Guidance Center and when the Baton Rouge Mental Health program was developed she became the first Director of Children's Services. Early in her career she became a Field Work Instructor for the LSU School of Social Work and later was Associate Professor of Social Work there. The roles within her family were most gratifying to her. She enjoyed a very special relationship with her husband, Lee, throughout their 54 years of marriage. Motherhood, which extended beyond family ties into the broader community, was particularly gratifying to her. She played an active role in supporting the local school and became a Cub Scout Den Mother to many of the children in the community. During the summers she could always be counted on to provide transportation to the local swimming hole and taught many of her son's friends how to swim and dance. Following her retirement as a Social Work educator she enjoyed traveling with family and friends. She also enjoyed trips to theatre and symphony as well as other activities. An avid reader, Mary was an active member of The Suburban Reviewers, a local lady's book club. As long as she was able, she spent long hours working in her yard. Throughout her life she was frequently sought out by family and friends as a concerned and compassionate listener. Mary was preceded in death by her parents, Clarence Burton Kemp and Rose Murray Kemp, her husband, Lee Morris Parent, Sr., her two brothers, Clarence Burton Kemp, Jr. and Ewell Charles Kemp, MD. She is survived by her son, Lee Morris Parent, Jr. and his wife, Neuora Dodson Parent, three grandchildren, Bradley Kemp Parent and his wife, Elizabeth Coburn Parent, Kimberly Marie Parent Coburn and her husband, Joe Coburn, and John Andrew Calkin, six great grandchildren, eight great great grandchildren, and numerous nephews, nieces and cousins. Visitation will be held at Greenoaks Funeral Home, 9425 Florida Blvd, Baton Rouge, LA from 5:00 PM till 8:00 PM on Sunday, April 28th and from 10:00 AM till 12:00AM on Monday, April 29th prior to services at 12:00 noon and burial at Greenoaks Memorial Park followed by a reception at the home of Joe and Kimberly Coburn, at 1540 Pelham Drive. Pall Bearers will be Joe Coburn, Brad Parent, T.J. Coburn, Dr. Ted Kemp, Dr. David Kemp and Ronald Bencaz.
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Published in TheAdvocate.com from Apr. 27 to Apr. 29, 2013