Mary Louise Tompkins Rock
July 30, 1927 – November 16, 2019
Mary Louise Tompkins Rock died at Imperial Plaza in Richmond, Virginia on November 16, 2019, after several years of declining health and cognitive ability. Marylou was born on July 30, 1927, in Moneta, Virginia, to George Bailey Tompkins and Thelma Meade Tompkins. She grew up in Roanoke, Virginia, where she attended public school and graduated from Jefferson High School in 1945. She graduated from National Business College, where she developed secretarial skills and majored in ornamental penmanship, following in the footsteps of her grandfather, Jennings Tompkins, who was a pioneer in the field with Zaner and Bloser. She was known throughout her adult years for her beautiful writing, often using her skills for filling in certificates and special papers as well as addressing the family Christmas cards and formal invitations. In addition to her parents, Marylou was predeceased by her husband, William Leighton Rock, whom she met at National Business College. They were married on September 27, 1947. Bill died on July 4, 2010, after a prolonged illness. She is survived by two sons, Dr. William Leighton Rock Jr. and wife, Katherine Costin Rock, of Glen Allen, Virginia and Dr. David Tompkins Rock and partner, Sarah Chopp Dennett, of Estero, Florida; and by their daughter, The Rev. Dr. Nancy Rock Poti and her husband, James Vincent Poti, of Midlothian, Virginia.
She is also survived by 10 grandchildren, William Leighton "Trip" Rock III and wife, Jessica Arin Rock, Samuel Shaw Rock and wife, Bailee Erin Bannan, Christopher Andrew Rock and Timothy Patrick Rock, who are the sons of Bill Jr. and Kathy Rock, James Hunter Rock, Hannah Leighton Rock and Haley Grace Rock, who are the children of Dave and his former wife, Tiffany Groover Rock, and Emily Elizabeth Eldridge and husband, Stephen Daniel Eldridge, Matthew David Poti and wife, Brittany Angeline Poti and Dr. Jennifer Marie Poti, who are the children of Nancy and Jim Poti. In addition, she is survived by four great-granddaughters, Airman First Class Rebecca Ann-Katherine Rock, Freedom Leigh Rock, Aislynn Bess Rock and Abigail Marie Eldridge; and by three great-grandsons, Jonah David Rock, Leighton Jacob Poti and William Jameson Eldridge; and by one stepgreat-grandson, Caleb Samuel Easter.
Also surviving are her sister, Sarah Tompkins Riganti and husband, Rocco Riganti, of Salem, Virginia; her brothers-in-law, Robert M. Rock of Nashville, Tennessee and Richard W. Rock and wife, Janet Rock, of Suffolk, Virginia; her sister-in-law, Kathryn Rock Weddle of Troutville, Virginia.
Bill and Marylou joined First Baptist Church, Richmond, on October 17, 1954, and became members of the Gold Band Class. Marylou served as president, as well as holding other offices of the closely-knit class of couples, multiple terms throughout the years until she could no longer be physically present at the church. She enjoyed working with the FBC Food Service Committee and leading a team of volunteers who served for Wednesday Night Suppers.
For many years, she enjoyed playing golf with her friends at Salisbury Country Club as a member of the Salisbury Women's Golf Association. Whether it was with the 18 Hole group or later the 9 Hole group, she liked both the competition and comradery. Bill and Marylou lived in the Bon Air area for many years before moving to Imperial Plaza in 2002. During the time she lived in independent living at Imperial Plaza, Marylou served as Volunteer Coordinator and then as President of the Resident Council. She loved leadership opportunities.
The family will gather at Woody Funeral Home located at 1771 North Parham Road on Sunday, November 24, between 2 and 4 p.m. in order to share their joys and sorrows with one another and their friends. A Service of Witness to the Resurrection and a celebration of Marylou's life will be held in the chapel of First Baptist Church on Monday, November 25, at 2 p.m. Burial will be in Westhampton Memorial Park and Chapel Mausoleum immediately after the service. Memorial contributions may be made to First Baptist Church, 2709 Monument Avenue, Richmond, Virginia 23220 or to Heartland Home Health and Hospice, 10800 Midlothian Turnpike, #303, North Chesterfield, Virginia or a charity of your choice
- William Leighton Rock, III
- Samuel Shaw Rock
- Christopher Andrew Rock
- Timothy Patrick Rock
- James Hunter Rock
- Matthew David Poti
- Hannah Leighton Rock
- Haley Grace Rock
- Emily Elizabeth Eldridge
- Jennifer Marie Poti
- Visitation Sunday, November 24, 2019
- Funeral Service Monday, November 25, 2019
- Committal Service Monday, November 25, 2019