Leola Pearce Smith

Leola Pearce Smith

Suffolk, VA
04.02.1940 - 01.20.2021
Portsmouth, VA

Leola Pearce Smith went to be with the Lord, Wednesday, January 20, 2021, surrounded by her family at Sentara Obici Hospital. She was the daughter of the late, James and Louise Pearce. She is also preceded in death by her loving husband of 56 years, Willie Melvin Smith, Jr; sister, Kay R. Pearce; and brother, James E. Pearce, Jr.

Leola grew up in Deep Creek and was a graduate of Deep Creek High School. She continued her education at Leigh Memorial Nursing School and graduated as an LPN. She also worked at Louse Obici Memorial Hospital in the pharmacy and later in life, provided childcare in her home for numerous family and friends.

Leola is survived by her daughters, Arlene Smith and Lisa Tarkington and husband, Steve Tarkington, Jr.; granddaughters, Tori and Ginger Tarkington; brother, Gregory Pearce and wife, Hazel of Powhatan, VA; brother in law, Earl Smith and wife, Glenda of Suffolk, VA; as well as a niece and nephew and their families.

The family will receive friends on Sunday, January 24, 2021 at 2 p.m at R. W. Baker & Co. Funeral Home and Crematory, 509 W. Washington St., Suffolk, VA 23434 and a service to follow at 3 p.m. conducted by Pastor Rob Slingluff. Burial will follow at Holly Lawn Cemetery for family and friends.

Memorial donations may be made to Bethlehem Christian Church, 1549 Holland Rd, Suffolk, VA 23434. Condolences may be registered at RWBakerFh.com

Start Time
End Time

RW Baker & Co. Funeral Home
United States

Start Time
End Time

RW Baker & Co. Funeral Home
United States


Lisa & Arlene and family, so sorry to hear that Leola is gone. I am so sorry that COVID won. She has been a strong woman in our community looking after kids all those years and supporting your dad in all his adventures. I am glad Tori and Ginger knew her so well and she knew them.You are all in my thoughts and prayers as you continue on. She is well and happy in a beautiful place now! Love you all!

Janet Brinkley

We are so sorry for your loss. May all of your happy memories comfort you, sustain you and bring you peace. With sincere sympathy, Frank & Bobbie

Frank & Bobbie Piland

Arlene and Lisa, I am so sorry for your loss. I pray that God will comfort you in your time of grief.

Lois Davis

Arlene and Lisa, we are so sorry to hear about your mom. Praying for comfort for you and your family.


We offer our Love Prayers and support to the family. Mrs Smith not only watched me a few times as a child, she also cared for my child (Alex). She was truly a special lady and will be missed. Arlene, Lisa, Steve, Ginger and Tori, you will always remember her in Loving ways.

William & Kathleen Powell

Sincerest sympathy Lisa and family on the loss of your mother. May you find peace in all of this, and be comforted ,in days to come, by wonderful memories.

Lynette Rhodes, Cliff Rhodes & family

Lisa, Steve, Tori & Ginger,
Our deepest sympathy and prayers on the passing of your Mom and Grandmother. God bless you all and give you comfort and peace in the beautiful memories you have of her.

Cheryl & Craig Casper

Our sympathy and thoughts are with you today. Leola was a blessing to so many people. She will be greatly missed. We are praying for Peace for each of you.

Brenda & Jerry McClenney

Brenda McClenney

I am so sad to hear of losing one of the original Tuesday night ladies. She was a very dear friend of my crazy mom and always such a pleasure to be around. Her sense of humor was spot on for their friendship. I loved her laugh and how she never hesitated to put my mother in her place. She was a great treasure. Sending you love and hugs! - Peaches


Dear Arlene and Lisa,
I have such fond memories of both your mom and dad,. My dad (Clarence Burton) and yours were in the Rescue Squad together for many years, and we all lived in the same neighborhood, too. They were two of the nicest people I have ever known. I am so sorry for your loss. You have my prayers and best wishes.

Chris (Burton) Ward

Add new comment

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.