George A. Smith & Sons Funeral Home

2812 North Highland, Jackson, TN


Mary Louise Sanford Finley

March 29, 1928May 13, 2020

Mary Louise Sanford Finley, age 92 of Jackson, passed away on Wednesday, May 13, 2020 at her home, surrounded by her family.

She was born on March 29, 1928 in Chester County, TN to the late Robert Lott and Mary Elizabeth Haltom Sanford. She was married to J. Walter Finley, Jr. on June 6, 1947, and they celebrated 72 years of marriage. She was co-owner with Walt in the family business, Finley’s Pharmacy at Highland Park for 41 years.

Lou will always be remembered for her love of writing letters to her family and her friends. She averaged 300 letters a year. These letters were always descriptive, and filled with her happy memories and maybe a pressed and dried flower or leaf. Most people say they saved every one they received. She also took thousands of pictures, and faithfully put them in albums which she labeled by the year. These albums are the history of her adult life, and each member of her loving family. She also wrote daily in beautiful journals, which tell not only about her day, but are scrapbooks with poems and pictures and keepsakes. She will always be remembered for her love of life, and everything and everyone in her world, especially her devoted husband.

Lou was Grandmommy to her many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She loved them all the best, and will always be remembered for her love of reading stories, taking long walks, and special times shared with each one. She always stopped to play.

She was a member of Campbell Street Church of Christ where she taught Wednesday night Bible study to the fifth graders for 42 years. She dearly loved her church family, and was greatly looking forward to her life in the presence of her Lord!

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her only brother, Howard Sanford, in 2012.

She is survived by her loving and dedicated husband, J. Walter Finley, Jr. of Jackson, her daughters Suzannah (Terry) Yanessa, and Melissa (Binford) Kimes. She had 11 grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren.

The family will hold a private graveside service at Henderson City Cemetery in Henderson, TN.


  • The Private Graveside Service

    Saturday, May 16, 2020


Mary Louise Sanford Finley

have a memory or condolence to add?

Carol Morgan

May 17, 2020

Lou was one of a kind. So loving and encouraging. I have some precious letters and cards and will treasure forever. I can never go to Catfish Cabin without thinking of all the many times we went and how much they enjoyed.
I could sit and talk to them all day.. I pray for Walter and that his other half has gone on. They were so close, and was funny, they would get up in middle of the night drink coffee and eat something and sometimes dance.
What special memories I have of them, and the great example they are to all that knew them..She’s with Jesus now♥️

Julie Daniels

May 16, 2020

What a beautiful soul and shining example of a Godly woman! My memories are of Lou and Walter at worship services at Campbell Street. What a wonderful couple that showed so much love to each other and everyone! Lou was always smiling and had uplifting words of encouragement. I’ve always looked up to her and she has a place in my heart.

Ramona Martin

May 15, 2020

Mrs. Lou was one of my favorites. She was absolutely beautiful inside and out. She had a wonderful smile. One never doubted the love between Mr. Walter and Mrs. Lou, it was (and is) truly special. She will be missed greatly here. I can’t help but think how happy my parents will be to see her. Our sympathy to all of her family. You are in our prayers.

Fran Baker

May 15, 2020

As a young mom, I sat behind Mrs Lou and Mr Walter at church. I often worried that my fussy baby would disturb the folks around us. One morning, Mrs Lou turned, patted my hand, and said with her sweet voice, “Don’t you take that (fussing) baby out. That is the sound of the LORDs church growing.” I have used this so often with young moms.
She also gave me a couple of cookbooks after a passing comment about how much I liked them.
Mrs Lou blessed all who were around her and is much beloved.

Diana McConnell

May 15, 2020

A great lady who will be greatly missed. I was fortunate to have shared a walk down Crook Ave . in Henderson listening to Lou’s stories of the homes and who owned them. She had permission to sit and rest on several porches and we did just that, we shared a rest time on the Sewell’s porch. When we returned to my house we sit on my porch and I have a picture of that to cherish. God has another angel.

Terry Tedder Jernigan

May 15, 2020

I remember going to Finley's pharmacy and Mr. and Mrs. Finley. I also remember her showing me some of her many scrapbooks of photos.

My thoughts are with the family at this time.

Sarah Beth Tyler

May 15, 2020

She took me for walks along Crook Avenue. She told me about being a little girl and our family full of educators. She made me feel like I was part of a long story full of women who were strong and beautiful inside and out. I watched her cook and work the cash register at the pharmacy and take off her make up. “Always use Ponds cream. Never soap.” She was my fifth grade Wednesday night teacher, and I was so proud to be her granddaughter and her student. She wrote me letters and spoke quietly to me about the right things to do. Mr. McKinney sat on her porch, and we would pat his head and call him a good frog. Her small, soft hand held mine. She told me about her wedding ring, never removed. She gave me gum and let me fall asleep on her shoulder during church (but not for long!). My little girl’s heart deep inside my woman’s heart has broken because of her passing. She lives there, reading me Beatrix Potter and letting me know it will be alright. It was just time for her to leave.

Debby Boutwell

May 15, 2020

Most of my memories of this precious lady were at worship. Lou was always the same, loving, smiling, making everyone who talked to her feel special. She was just full of love! She always looked so pretty! Lou was a great example of a Christian in every way. We were blessed by her life!!

Louis Sipes

May 15, 2020

Boy, was this some special lady. I can hear hear voice and will never forget her beautiful smile.

When I was little our family would go to there house. Along with my two sisters Melissa and Suzanna we would run around the house like chickens with our heads cut off. During all that madness Walter, Lou and my parents were trying to lesson to music, probably Big Band or Classical....not sure.

It makes me sad Lou is gone, but if you knew this this lady, one thing is not in doubt. You were richer for the Lord letting your two paths cross.

Rest In Peace Lou !


May 15, 2020

Mau and I send our condolences to you dear Melissa - will be praying for you and your Dad in the coming days and weeks. What a sweet comforting testimony of your mothers gracious life! Much live to you from Dauntless Hill !!! xxooA


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