Lois Ann W. C. French

Lois Ann W. C. French

IRVINGTON—Lois Ann Waterbury (Carpenter) French of Irvington died peacefully at age 91 on February 12, 2021. Her outgoing personality, fun and engaging manner, lasting friendships, and her devotion to her family will be missed by all who knew her.

Lois was born in New York City in 1929, the daughter of Theodore Eugene Waterbury and Dorothy Herrman Waterbury. She graduated from St. John Baptist School in Mendham, N.J., and subsequently attended Bradford Junior College in Haverhill, Mass.

In 1949, she married Samuel Emlen Carpenter III and shortly thereafter moved to the Washington, D.C., area, residing for the most part in McLean. Her marriage to Mr. Carpenter ended in divorce.

Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Lois actively volunteered for various organizations in Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C. Her enthusiasm, intelligence, creativity, dedication and kindness enhanced her years of service to these groups. Among these organizations were the National Symphony Orchestra, Fairfax County Board of Zoning Appeals, Fairfax-Falls Church Health and Welfare Council, Fairfax County United Givers Fund, Fairfax County Republican Committee and the Junior League of Washington. She served as president of both the Fairfax County YWCA and the National Capital Area YWCA.

In 1969, Lois entered federal service at the Department of Housing and Urban Development and then joined the newly established Environmental Protection Agency in 1971. When she left the EPA in 1979, she was working in the Regional Support Branch, Operations Division, Office of Pesticide Programs. 

She married Edward Duffy French in 1972, who preceded her in death in 2014. In 1983, Lois and Edward relocated to Virginia’s Northern Neck, residing in White Stone.

The same volunteer spirit that marked her earlier years in Washington, D.C., was evident in the life that Lois established in Lancaster County. There, Lois was active in the Garden Club of the Northern Neck and with Historic Christ Church, where she was a most dedicated volunteer. Lois served on the board of the Foundation for Historic Christ Church and its various committees from 1987 to 2011, and she was president from 1996 to 1999. Lois was also a member of Grace Episcopal Church and the Indian Creek Yacht and Country Club.

She is survived by her two daughters, Perry Carpenter Wheelock (Arthur) of Washington, D.C., Brien Carpenter Harrison (William) of Palm City, Fla., four grandchildren, Sarah Swain and Louisa Swain, Wright Harrison (David Walter) and Carter Harrison (Kristen); as well as a great-grandson, Hunter Harrison. Her sister, Gwynne Waterbury Reiley (Blair) of Scottsdale, Ariz., also survives her. In addition, she is survived by three stepchildren, Duffy, Anne and Remick French, their spouses and children.

Her family wishes to express their heartfelt appreciation to the staff and caregivers at Rappahannock Westminster-Canterbury for the care provided in recent years to Lois and the family. A service and internment will be planned for a date later in 2021.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in her memory may be made to the Foundation for Historic Christ Church, PO Box 24, Irvington, VA 22480. Online condolences may be made at curriefuneral.com.