Nelsen Funeral Home & Crematory - Reid Chapel

412 S. Washington Hwy., Ashland, VA


Eleanor Attkisson Smith

March 21, 1926August 5, 2019

93, of Ashland, died suddenly on August 5, 2019. She was predeceased by her parents, Robert and Blanche Attkisson, as well as siblings, Robert, Elizabeth and Doris. She was also predeceased by her loving husband James W. Smith Jr., and her son, James W. Smith III. She is survived by her daughter, Kathryn Smith Cheesman and her husband Paul; daughter in law, Ruth Durham Smith; 2 granddaughters, Courtney Smith Morgan (Brian) and Ashley Smith Higginson (Todd); 3 grandsons; Jason Wayne Smith (Glynda), Robert Travis Smith (Sarah) and Andrew Durham Smith (Cameron). Also surviving her are great grandchildren Kyle and Natalie Higginson, Logan and Liam Smith, Emerson, Sadie, Macey and Sawyer Smith, Hayden, Campbell and Elijah Smith as well as Brody Andrews. Also surviving are her bonus grandchildren, Paul Edward Cheesman III (Heather) Deborah Cheesman Doyle (Jim), Alison Cheesman Ward (Michael) and great grandchildren: Alex and Brandon Cheesman; Hunter and Peyton Doyle and Michaela and Watts Ward. She is also survived by her sister in law, Peggy Burch (Jack) as well as two loving nephews, Douglas Hall (Annie Laura) and Watson Hall (Ruth) During World War II, she proudly worked as a Parachute Inspector at the Crawford Defense plant while her husband served in the European Theater. She vividly remembered the day it was announced on loud speaker that the war was over. When that was announced, all machinery fell silent and workers were sent home immediately. Mrs. Smith served as president of the Hanover County Home Demonstration Club and also as president of Henry Clay Woman’s Club. She was a dedicated long standing member of First Baptist Church, Ashland, serving as Deacon and in many church leadership roles. The family will receive friends Monday, August 12, 2019 from 12:30 to 1:30 PM at First Baptist Church, Ashland, 800 Thompson Street, Ashland, VA, 23005. The service will be held at 1:30 PM, reception to follow. Interment will be private. Eleanor’s greatest joy in life was being a wife, mother, Granny and Great Granny. She was a strong Christian lady who prayed fervently and loved all people, especially children. Thanks and love to the residents and volunteers at Hanover Manor Assisted Living; Your friendships were a vital part of each day. Special thanks to all of the staff members at Hanover Manor. The way you served her, loved her and made her feel at home were extremely meaningful to her and our entire family. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to St. Jude, 262 Danny Thomas Pl, Memphis TN 38105.


  • Family To Receive Friends Monday, August 12, 2019
  • Memorial Service Monday, August 12, 2019


Eleanor Attkisson Smith

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Kathy Dearry

August 9, 2019

Eleanor was a very sweet,kind and lovely woman. It was always a joy when she came to the shop to get her hair styled. I didn't get to see her often. The times we did see each other was very special. My condolences to all. Kathy ( Styles Unlimited) Of Ashland

Janet McLean

August 8, 2019

She was always such a quiet, kind lady and a wonderful friend to our family for so many years. She will be missed.

Kelly Sisson-Henson

August 8, 2019

Mrs Smith was the very best! She was a dear friend to my parents, and a faithful deacon. She had a quiet demeanor and great strength, yet a spark in her eyes that held back a quick wit. I can’t think of anyone at FBC that was more respected than Jim and Eleanor Smith. My life is richer from knowing them. Kathy, Ruth, and family — know you are being held in light and love. 🌻