Cover photo for Mary Ridgway Smythe's Obituary
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1920 Mary 2011

Mary Ridgway Smythe

February 20, 1920 — January 24, 2011

Mary Helena Catherine Ridgway Smythe, widow of Henry B. Smythe, died at home at 31 Legare Street, Charleston on January 24, 2011

"Tigger," as she was known to her friends and family, was born in Surbiton, England on February 20, 1920, the daughter of CDR Guy Stuart Ridgway and Helena Gosling Ridgway.  She was raised in Bermuda and attended the Godolphin School in England.

Tigger married Henry B. Smythe on August 7, 1943 in New York City.  After the War, the couple moved to Charlottesville, where her husband attended law school.  Following his graduation, they moved to Charleston in 1947. 

Tigger was a member of St. Michael's Church, where she sang joyfully in the choir and was head of the Flower Guild for many years.  She was active in the Association for the Blind, Junior League, Roper Hospital Women's Auxiliary, Albemarle Supper Club, Ivy Garden Club, Century Society, and The Society for the Preservation of Spirituals.  Her passions included tennis, the beach, and gardening. 

She is survived by three sons, Henry B. Smythe, Jr. and his wife, Susan Mackall Smythe, David McCord Smythe and his wife, Ruthie Conway Smythe, and George Buist Smythe and his wife, Therese Trouche Smythe, and was predeceased by her eldest son, Guy Ridgway Smythe (Rebecca), who died in 2008.  She is also survived by eleven grandchildren, Thomas Mackall Smythe, James Adger Smythe, David McCord Smythe, Jr., Nancy Taylor Smythe, Mary Grace Smythe, Caroline Trouche deGolian, Catherine Elizabeth Smythe, Emily Elizabeth Smythe, George Buist Smythe, Jr., Edwin Carr Smythe, and Helen Ravenel Smythe, all of Charleston.  She is also survived by her great good friend and caregiver for over 34 years, Patsy Richburg.

There will be a visitation at 31 Legare Street on Wednesday, January 26 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.  The funeral will be on Thursday, January 27 at 2:30 p.m. at St. Michael's Episcopal Church, followed by interment at the Second Presbyterian Churchyard.

Memorials may be sent to St. Michael's Flower Guild or the Association for the Blind.



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