Renée Chevalier Lyons
Passed away suddenly on November 1, 2018. She was born in Washington, DC on August 2, 1931 to John Collins Chevalier and Edna Wilcox Chevalier. She was preceded in death by her two brothers, John and Shaler Chevalier. Renée graduated from Mt. Vernon College in 1952 and married Ensign James "Ace" Lyons April 1954 which started her on a magnificent Navy voyage. She supported her husband Admiral James "Ace" Lyons who was Commander-in-Chief, US Pacific Fleet in every conceivable way. She accompanied him on the historic port visit to China November 3, 1986, the first U.S. Navy task force visit to China in 37 years since the Communist took power. Elegance and doing things first class were her trademarks. She was at ease in hosting many world leaders. Her official dinner parties achieved legendary status. Renée was a world traveler, having visited over 45 countries and lived in several more. Throughout her Navy life, she was a strong participant and activist in local charities. She led the efforts to sponsor an orphanage in Thailand. She has also sponsored scholarships for Navy children. This work she continued after her husband retired by sponsoring an annual charity event at her farm in Warrenton, VA for over 20 years. She was able to raise tens of thousands of dollars to help with the education of Navy children. One of Renée's proudest moments was becoming the sponsor of the cruiser USS Philippine Sea (CG-58). Renée had many interests including collecting antiques; miniature doll houses and furniture; raising Bassett Hounds and hosts of other dogs, but her primary focus always remained her family. Renée is survived by her husband, her three children, Michele, Yvonne, Jim, and three grandchildren, Max Slingluff, Zoe Renée Slingluff and James A. Lyons IV. Interment will be at the United States Naval Academy. A service will be held in the Chapel at 10:30, November 8. In lieu of flowers, donations should be made to your local SPCA.
Published in The Washington Post on Nov. 4, 2018.