Born November 8, 1933 in Dadeville, Alabama, Lila Corprew was the second of three daughters born to Lila Herren Corprew and Clifton Eugene Corprew. The “Corprew girls” shared a lively childhood filled with memorable adventures (and some mischief), friends, relatives, church and school activities, summer days at Lake Martin, and the comradery of small-town community.
Following graduation from Dadeville High School, Lila Corprew obtained specialized training in the field of early childhood education, and soon after opened “Miss Lila’s Kindergarten,” the first kindergarten in Dadeville. Remarkably, more than five decades later, she heard from her first class of now-adult kindergarten students who still reminisced about their “one magical year at Miss Lila’s.”
In 1955, Lila married her high school sweetheart, Donald Denny, in Chamblee, France where he was stationed with the US Air Force. Lila enthusiastically loved and assisted her husband. For years at Christmas season, she baked pecan pies for customers of his Utilities Supply business. Their marriage commitment continued 57 years until Donald Denny’s passing in 2012. Lila and Donald were parents of three children: Deborah, Don, and Teresa.
Throughout her adult life, Lila lived in Birmingham, Alabama; then primarily in Georgia towns of Snellville, LaGrange, and Loganville. With her characteristic optimism, Lila would smile and say,
“I always liked wherever I lived.” In each location, she developed a circle of loyal friends.
Lila always kept a special connection to her hometown of Dadeville, Alabama, where she and Donald established a family “cottage in the woods.” They cherished trips to the cottage, especially if the getaway involved attending a football game at Auburn University. Lila never turned down an opportunity to see Auburn play football. With her orange/blue “shaker” in hand, she cheered Auburn at every SEC stadium and numerous bowl games. The trip was even better if it included a restaurant meal of fried oysters and key lime pie.
In Dadeville, Lila and Donald became generous benefactors for special projects in the local schools. For more than eighty years, Lila stayed in touch with her Alabama “girlfriend group” of ten friends who met in grade school and maintained close connections throughout their lives.
In each town where Lila and Donald lived, they joined a local Baptist church, ensured their children participated with them, and invested their time and talents. Lila was most interested in the church Pre-School Department, and set out to create and maintain high standards for early childhood Christian education. She relished participating in training for teachers and pre-school coordinators. Lila was adamant that church pre-school is “not babysitting;” rather an opportunity to share the love of Jesus with each child as well as the child’s family. Every child in her class was blessed with the caring, lovingly-prepared teaching of Lila Denny.
Of course, her own children experienced Lila’s love, creativity, and boundless supportive parental talents. While raising her children, she fully committed to “being there” as cheerleader, coach, and teacher. Whether in the sports stands or a theatrical production or awards ceremony, her presence supported and encouraged excellence. Lila managed the home with resourcefulness, high expectations and integrity. She lived life with a keen intuition, sense of humor, productivity, and believed in always being on time (preferably early). To this day, her children recall countless encouraging notes, labels, care packages, and uplifting newspaper articles from Mom Lila. The Denny home was often the activity hub for the neighborhood, and parties organized by Lila for family and friends were renowned for their themes, games and foods.
Lila began each day with uplifting words of Scripture and prayer, remembering God’s goodness and thanking Him for many blessings. She loved to recite, “This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” Lila’s deep faith was often manifested by helping others in need, as she shared and served to the benefit of others.
In reflecting on Lila’s sweet spirit and Christian priorities, “her children rise up and call her blessed…” [Proverbs 31:28a] Loved ones left to carry on the legacy of Lila Corprew Denny are: daughter Deborah (husband Dale) Relyea; son Don (wife Kelly) Denny; and daughter Teresa (husband Keith) Holcombe; grandchildren: Jordan Bryan, Ethan Bryan, Elena Denny, Daniel Denny, Tyler Denny; sister Mary Ann (husband George) Crouch; sister Elizabeth (husband Richard) Knox, and extended relatives.
The family expresses deep appreciation to the caring teams at Park Place (Monroe, GA) and Longleaf Hospice. May Lila’s life inspire us to thank God every day, live for Jesus, share generously, and be kind. In lieu of flowers, please bless someone in her honor.
A private graveside service will be held for immediate family at Snellville City Cemetery in Snellville, Georgia. GOD IS GOOD.
Arrangements by Tim Stewart Funeral Home, Loganville, Georgia.
Reposted courtesy of Tim Stewart Funeral Home.