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It is with heavy hearts that we rejoice in the reuniting of Dixie Lee (Kirby) Laval with her husband of 64 years, Calvin Coolidge Laval, on February 14, 2019…Valentine’s Day. She has now joined him as a citizen of Heaven. Henry and Ellen Kirby, Louis and Hedwig Laval, Jimmy and Lindy Laval, and Mignon (Laval) Russell were there to greet the happy couple.
Left here to honor her memory are her son and daughter, Michael Laval and Melissa Laval Deuel, granddaughters Cassandra (Jeremy) Miller and Katrina (Jacob) Stanfield, great-grandchildren Ashley Miller and Mason, Maelie, and Noah Stanfield, sister, Henrietta Johnston, sister-in-law Helen Laval, and many loving nieces and nephews.
Dixie was a 1944 graduate of Paseo High School. She attended Michigan Avenue Baptist Church where she met and married Cooly on October 2nd, 1948. Together, Dixie and Cooly painted a mural of Jesus Christ on the baptismal (Dixie painted while Cooly directed from the back of the church).
Dixie used her talents to pursue careers in both photography and oil painting. She traveled throughout the United States, Europe, and New Zealand as an instructor, lecturer, and as a qualified affiliated juror. For many years she served as a consultant to labs throughout the United States. She has also been an instructor at Winona,Texas School, Triangle School, MAIIP, New York School and many others. Her work has been exhibited at Winona, the International Hall of Fame, the ASP Traveling Loan Collection, the Professional Photographer Magazine, and Epcot.
Dixie received her Fellowship in 2003, the highest honor bestowed by the American Society of Photographers. Less than 100 photographers worldwide have received this award. A permanent collection of her life’s work now resides in the James C. Kirkpatrick Library at the University of Central Missouri.
Memorial services will be held at 11:00AM Saturday, March 2, 2019 at Heartland Cremation & Burial Society, 6113 Blue Ridge Blvd, Raytown, MO 64133. A visitation will be held at 10:00AM Saturday, March 2, 2019 at Heartland Cremation & Burial Society, 6113 Blue Ridge Blvd, Raytown, MO 64133.