Remembering Myrtis Chandler Orr

Myrtis Chandler Orr


Funeral services for Mrs. Myrtis Chandler Orr, 98, will be held at 2:00 P.M., Tuesday, November 22, 2022 at Temple Baptist Church Chapel.  Interment will follow at Douglas Cemetery in Choudrant, under the direction of Kilpatrick Funeral Home in Ruston.  Visitation will be held prior to the service from 1:00 P.M. until 2:00 P.M. at Temple Baptist Church Chapel.

Myrtis passed away peacefully November 19, 2022. She was born in April, 1924, and reared in Choudrant, Louisiana, where she graduated from Choudrant High School. She then attended Louisiana Polytechnic Institute (Louisiana Tech University) where she met her soulmate, Virgil Orr, while they were both working in the Tech Dining Hall. He later became her tutor for organic chemistry, and they always said, “Our chemistry worked real well together.”

During a 14-day leave from serving in the Army for World War II, Virgil came back to Ruston to marry Myrtis on April 13, 1945. Seven days after their marriage, they parted as he boarded a ship bound for the Philippines. He returned in 1946, and they moved to Baton Rouge for him to attend graduate school at Louisiana State University.

Myrtis graduated in 1944 with a B.S. in Home Economics and later earned a Masters +30 in 1966. After her daughters started school, Myrtis began teaching.  Her career spanned 34 years, teaching home economics at Dodson High School, pre-school at First Baptist in Ruston, and kindergarten at A.E. Phillips Lab School. She also served as a professor of early childhood education at Louisiana Tech University.

In addition to supporting all that Virgil was involved in, Myrtis was active with Lagniappe Ladies at Louisiana Tech, the Cosmos Club, the North Louisiana Auxiliary at the hospital, and various other honor and professional organizations. She received the Tower Medallion Award from Louisiana Tech University in 2018.

Myrtis came to know Christ as her Savior at a young age. She was a member of Temple Baptist Church for 69 years, where she taught Sunday School, was a member of the sanctuary choir, and served in many capacities. In retirement, Myrtis was an avid quilter and gardener and loved nothing more than hosting her family and friends at her home. She was very proud of her family and completely devoted to Virgil during their 76 years of marriage.

Myrtis was predeceased by her parents, John and Mary Chandler; her siblings, J.W. Chandler, Chester Chandler, Inez Chandler Price, and Lavena Chandler Lann; and son-in-law Ed Rice. She is survived by her daughters, Virginia Orr Rice of Little Rock, AR, and Marilyn Orr Hyams and husband Bill of Ruston; four grandchildren, Ron Weiland of Monroe, Brian Weiland of DeFuniak Springs, FL, Toni Hyams Crawford and husband Dickie of Ruston, and Daniel Hyams and wife Michelle of Madison, AL; eight great-grandchildren, Joshua Weiland, Beau Weiland, Landon Weiland, Emma Crawford Richardson and husband Danny, Adam Crawford, Nate Hyams, Sam Hyams, and Adrienne Hyams; and two very special caregivers, Tess Jones and Marsha White.

In lieu of flowers, please make memorial contributions to Temple Baptist Church Mission Fund, Louisiana Tech Foundation for benefit of the Mary Wilks Chandler Scholarship, or a charity of your choice.

Online condolences may be extended to the family at

Kilpatrick Funeral Homes – Ruston