Mrs. Louise Keith Smiley Goodson, 97, passed away peacefully at her home in Sunbury, GA, on January 16, 2021, surrounded by her loving family. She was born on March 27, 1923, in Screven, GA to the late Mr. Joseph Keith and Mrs. Stella Alma Keith. She grew up in Wayne County and attended both Bradwell and Screven High School. She married R. Kenneth Smiley, Sr. and moved to Walthourville, GA, where they raised three children – Pat, Ken, and Jeff. Years after Kenneth's death, she remarried to Claude Goodson, and they spent their years together in Jesup, GA, Greenville, SC, and eventually moved to Crescent Beach, FL. She enjoyed walks on the beach and watching the beautiful sunsets. Louise loved gardening. She was an avid golfer and, in her younger days, won many tournaments at Cherokee Rose Country Club. Most of all, she loved being with her family.
Louise was the last surviving sibling of six brothers and three sisters. She was also preceded in death by her first husband Rufus Kenneth Smiley, Sr.; her two sons Rufus Kenneth Smiley, Jr. and Joe Jeffrey Smiley; and her second husband, Claude Hamilton Goodson. Louise is survived by a daughter, Patricia S. Graddy (Len); daughters-in-law, Angie C. Smiley and Sharon W. Smiley; grandchildren Rufus Kenneth "Kenny" Smiley III (Teri), Heather Louise Graddy, Alison Smiley Hugli (Bryan); a great grandson, Robert Kenneth "R.K." Hugli; step grandchildren; step great-grandchildren; step great-great grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews. She was well taken care of by her beloved caretakers, Rosemary Smith, Katherine West, Chandra Mobley, Angel Hines, Shantria Golden, Tranessia Carter, and Mayra Barrows. As well as her two special hospice nurses, Beth Mixon and Jerri McGowan.
A private family graveside service is being held on January 21, 2021, at Hinesville Cemetery, where she will be laid to rest in the Smiley family plot beside her beloved Kenneth. Reverend Brenda Crawford and Reverend Steven Lee will be officiating. In lieu of flowers, the family asks for donations to be made to GHC Hospice Foundation, P.O. Box 15665, Savannah, GA 31416.
Published in Coastal Courier from Jan. 19 to Jan. 26, 2021.