Lavita Love Story, age 95, of Corsicana passed away peacefully on Monday, June 15, 2020 at Legacy West Nursing Facility in Corsicana. She was born on October 22, 1924 in Tyler, Texas. She was the only child of Roy C. Love and Bertha Claire Lovett Love, lifelong residents of Corsicana.
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Lavita’s life was one that most girls only dream of. She had parents that worshipped her and fulfilled her every need. She had the best education; after attending schools in Corsicana, she went to Hockaday Preparatory School in Dallas, then on to Southern Methodist University where she was a member of Pi Beta Phi sorority and finally she studied at Juilliard School of Music Conservatory in New York City where she studied voice. Her professor wanted Lavita to sing at the Met. She chose to leave New York and return home to Corsicana. Even though Lavita chose to return to Corsicana she always loved her music. She would spend hours at the piano playing and singing, after the girls were born they would all gather around the piano and sing songs while Lavita played. In later years when she was unable to play, visitors would hear the stereo playing those tunes on the stereo that Lavita loved.
She loved all animals, especially horses and dogs. During her youth many family vacations were spent at a dude ranch in Cowles, New Mexico where she was able to enjoy spending days with the horse she so loved. Lavita also spent many summers with her two aunts in Carlsbad, N. M. Later she went on many trips with the V.V. friends (her group of best friends ever) and loved every minute of the time spent together.
Lavita’s love of her life was Daniel A. Story. When Lavita returned to Corsicana after New York, Dan was attending Texas A & M University where he was pulled into the Army Air Corp pilot training program. He became a pilot of the B-24 Bomber and while serving on his last mission out of North Africa on a bombing run his plane received extensive damage and he was forced to crash land at first landfall. He and his crew were captured by the Germans and he was held in a German prison camp for 26 months. Upon Dan’s returning home to Corsicana, he and Lavita were married in her parents home on July 28, 1945.
Lavita and Dan stayed in the Air Force for 20 years before retiring and settling down in Corsicana with their three daughters. Lavita was the best of military wives and she loved meeting new people and always had her beautiful smile and gracious ways with everyone she met. She never left the house without her hair fixed, her makeup perfected, a fine fitting suit and of course her high heels. She greeted everyone with “Hi, how are you? Good to see you.” and meant it from her heart.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, and her special V.V’s friends.
Lavita is survived by her daughters; Alicia Barnebee of Alva, Florida, Stephenie Story Gruver and husband John of Corsicana, Texas and Margo Love Story of Anna Marie, Florida: her grandchildren; Chris Barnabee and wife Janice of Naples, Florida, Elizabeth Barnebee of Ft. Myers, Florida, Brian Keith Gruver of Corsicana and Jacqueline Story Long of Monterrey, California and her great-grandchildren; Christopher, Brianna, Danny and Matthew Barnebee of Florida and Logan, Bradley, Mason and Aliana Gruver of Texas.
The family wishes to thank Lavita’s loving caregivers; Carolyn, Delores, Mary and Lena and the wonderful staff of Legacy West Nursing Facility for the love and care that they each gave to Lavita.
Memorials may be made to the Alzheimer's Association at www.act.alz.org or St. John’s Episcopal Church at 101 N. 14th Street, Corsicana, Texas 75110.
Visitation with the family will be held on Friday, June 19, 2020 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM at Corley Funeral Home. Graveside services will be held on Saturday, June 20, 2020 at 10:00 AM at Hamilton-Beeman Cemetery in Retreat, Texas with Father Edward Monk officiating. Social distancing will be enforced.