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April 6, 1911-Sept. 14, 2006

Mrs. Lillian Smith Hough, a gentle, sweet spirit passed on Thursday evening, Sept. 14, 2006, at her home in Lexington. The daughter of Lula Matilda Vail Smith and Lonnie Bruce Smith, she was born April 6, 1911, in Pikeville., the oldest of four children. She was reared in that small eastern North Carolina community in Wayne County. Lillian attended the public schools of Wayne County, graduating from Pikeville High School in May 1928. She graduated from Greensboro College in May 1932 with a B.A. in English and taught in the public schools of North Carolina for several years.

Lillian married John McManus Hough on Aug. 15, 1934. They had three children: John Jr., Michael Vail and Harriet. Lillian lovingly devoted her life to caring for her husband and children. From 1947 to 1971 they lived in Eden, where John served as superintendent of Leaksville (renamed Eden) City Schools. In September 1971, John and Lillian moved to Lexington, N.C. to spend their retirement years near their cottage at High Rock Lake. They quickly involved themselves in the life of First Baptist Church in Lexington and other community activities. Lillian maintained her beautiful garden at the lake and started a new one in Lexington, often rising at first sunlight to dig , plant and weed. Growing and sharing flowers was one of the greatest joys of her life. After 56 years of marriage, her beloved husband John, at age 85, passed on January 13, 1991.

Following her husband's death, Mrs. Hough, in her unassuming way, continued to serve the church, community and family. At First Baptist, she was a devoted member of the Dorcas-Fidelis Sunday School class, the Frady-Johnson Circle and the communion committee. She was a pioneer in composting and natural gardening and was awarded a Life Membership in the Garden Makers Garden Club. For many years, she was a volunteer with the Lexington Memorial Hospital Ladies Auxiliary. She loved to read and was a member of the Friends of the Davidson County Public Library. She was an Honorary Regent of the Captain Benjamin Merrill Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, and a member of the Robert E. Lee Chapter of the UDC and the Lexington-Davidson County NCRSP.

Mrs. Hough cherished both her own and her husband's large family. She especially loved and admired her vivacious sister, Dot, and who was deeply grateful to her for the care she provided their mother. She was also most appreciative of the guidance given to her by her nephew. Dr. William A. Hough III, as she courageously faced numerous physical challenges in her latter years. Lillian Smith Hough was a beautiful, gracious, dignified lady whose petite stature belied her strength of character. The greatest gift she bequeathed her family was a binding cord of healing love.

In addition to her parents and husband, Mrs. Hough was preceded in death by her brothers, Lonnie Bruce Smith Jr. and Thomas Lodric Smith. She is survived by her sister, Dorothy Smith Boone of Clinton; her children and their spouses: Beverly Nance and John M. Hough Jr. of Mars Hill, Nancy Casey and Michael Vail Hough of Eden, and Harriet and John W. Smith of Wilmington,; her grandchildren and their spouses: Holly J. Hough, Diane Nickolay and Richard Hough Whitehead, Robin Vail Hough and Richard Kyle Luther, Michele Vail Hough and Gary Anthony McCaleb, Mia Dawn Hough and Samuel Jones Price IV, and Casey Robert Hough; her great-grandchildren: Curtis David Whitehead, Lauren Vail Luther, Caroline Marie Whitehead, Jonathan Kyle Luther, David Anthony McCaleb and Joshua Lee McCaleb; and her beloved cousins, nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held at First Baptist Church, 201 West Third Avenue, Lexington, N.C., on Sunday, September 17, 2006, at 2 p.m. The family will receive friends in the Fellowship Hall immediately following the service. A private burial service will be held later for the family at Forest Mills Memorial Park.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to First Baptist Church, Box. 436. Lexington, N.C., 27292; First Baptist Church, 533 Greenwood St., Eden, N.C., 27288; or to Hough Scholarship Fund, Catawba College, 2300 West Innes St., Salisbury, N.C., 28144; or to Hough Scholarship Fund, Mars Hill College, Box 370, Mars Hill, N.C., 28754; or to Hospice of Davidson County, P.O. Box 1941, Lexington, N.C. 27293.

(Written and Pd by the family)

Published in Obituaries on September 15, 2006 2:06 PM