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Mary Lou (Herron) Wheatley
November 10, 1942 ~ September 24, 2023 (age 80) 80 Years Old
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Mary Lou (Herron) Wheatley passed away peacefully on Sunday, September 24, 2023, in Louisville, Kentucky, surrounded by her loved ones. She was born on November 10, 1942, in Louisville, one of five children of the late Elza Herron and Beatrice Herron.
Mary Lou spent much of her life in Hardinsburg, Kentucky, where she raised her children. She eventually moved back to Louisville, her hometown, where she graduated from Durrett High School in 1961. She worked as a babysitter, a hostess at Rough River State Park, Shoney's, and the Seelbach Hotel, from where she retired.
She spent her free time traveling with her best friends - mostly to Gatlinburg - collecting recipes, cooking, canning beans, shopping, watching Westerns, reading romance novels, attending Derby Dinner Playhouse, driving around with her pug Paris, and hanging out with her grandchildren. Her children and grandchildren were her pride and joy - her greatest achievements - and she was always quick to be with them or share a story about them. No one could match her skill at playing army guys or building a fort.
Mary Lou was the type of person who was willing to do anything for anyone at any time, whether someone needed a ride home, a place to sleep, food, advice, name it. She was fiercely loyal; once you were in her circle, she held on tight. She also had a carefree sense of humor and was quick to laugh, including at herself if warranted. She had a keen sense of style and enjoyed being a part of any social occasion. She loved making plans with her friends and family.
Mary Lou was a deeply faithful person and was devoted to the Catholic Church her entire life.
She is survived by two children, Allen Wheatley (Angie) and Micky Wheatley (Alicia Kelso). She has seven grandchildren - Richard, Charles and Thomas Irvin, Adam Wheatley, Morgan Fillmore (Clay), Christian Wheatley and George Wheatley-Kelso. She has several great grandchildren. A brother, Bobby Herron, also survives, as do several nieces and nephews.
In addition to her parents, Mary Lou was preceded in death by a son, Ricky Irvin, her brothers, Edward, Eugene and Ray Herron and her best friends, Wanda Thompson and grandmother Margerete Irvin.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the Cades Cove Preservation Association. Mary Lou's wish was for cremation with a Celebration of Life to be held at a later date.