Leonard Marelle Gwaltney

Published 1:07 pm Friday, June 29, 2018

Leonard Marelle Gwaltney, 102, passed away peacefully at Sentara Obici Hospital on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 after a brief illness.  He was a lifelong resident of Isle of Wight County and maintained his Century Farm birthplace on Wren’s Mill Road in Smithfield. Mr. Gwaltney graduated from Smithfield High School in 1934.  He attended business school in Newport News and was employed for 38 years with Newport News Shipbuilding, retiring in 1978 from the taxes and financial report department.  He was a member of Smithfield Baptist Church and sang in the choir for about 30 years.  During his married life, he and his family traveled to every state except for Alaska and Hawaii.  He loved photography since his teenage years and kept photograph albums in chronological order, documenting every car he owned, place he visited and family events. 

Mr. Gwaltney was preceded in death by his loving wife, Martha Anderson Gwaltney, after sharing 65 years of marriage. Left to cherish his memory and wonderful long life are his daughters, Ann Gwaltney Bray and husband, Jimmy, of Smithfield and Vicki Gwaltney Garrison and husband, Brent, of Richmond; two grandchildren, Scott Gwaltney Bray and wife, Megan, of Smithfield and Lauren Bray Wills and husband, Burgess of Windsor; and three great-grandchildren, Ainsley and Matthew Wills and Carter Bray.  

Special thanks to our father’s wonderful personal companions, Martha Sellers and Diane Bryant, whose care allowed him to continue living his life on the Pagan River. A graveside service will be conducted Saturday, June 30 at 10 a.m. at Bethany Cemetery with the Rev. Dr. Donald R. Rhoton officiating.  A reception will be held immediately following the service in the Family Life Center at Smithfield Baptist Church. The family suggests memorial donations to the Bethany Church Association Cemetery Fund c/o Raymond Edwards, 13088 Mills Swamp Road, Smithfield, VA 23430 or Smithfield Baptist Church Bereavement Committee, 100 Wainwright Drive, Smithfield, VA 23430. Condolences may be registered online at www.littlesfuneralhome.com.

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