Eileen Leonard Foster

- April 23, 2024

Eileen Leonard Foster, age 103, of Charlottesville, Virginia, passed away on April 23, 2024 at Westminster-Canterbury of the Blue Ridge.

Widow of Colonel David Ewing Foster, U.S. Army, Eileen was born at Fort Sill, Oklahoma on October 19, 1920 to the late Lt. General John W. Leonard, U.S. Army and Eileen O’Brien Leonard. In addition to her husband and parents, she was predeceased by her sister, Natalie (Michael) Crosthwait; and her brother, John (Betty) Leonard, Jr.

She attended kindergarten in Washington D.C. (when Easter egg rolling on the White House lawn was a small neighborhood party); first grade in Georgia; second grade in Kansas (where schoolchildren still chatted in Indian sign language behind the upraised lids of their desks); third through eighth grades in Delaware County, Pennsylvania; high school at Ecole St. Joseph, Tientsin, China; college in Maryland.

During World War II Eileen served with the American Red Cross in England, France, Luxembourg and Germany. The immediate post-war years were spent in California, Texas, and Kentucky where David and Eileen were married. They soon left for Germany, then returned to Kansas, then Northern Virginia. Next, across the Pacific to the sweltering equatorial climate of South Vietnam, followed by the ideal tropical climate of Hawaii. After five years of year-round summer, she only survived the following winter in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, by wearing wool petticoats under party dresses. Moving next to Oklahoma, they found buffalo still roaming the wildlife refuge near their house. Afterwards came Alabama, South Carolina, Fort Belvoir, Virginia, and lastly Albemarle County, Virginia, where they lived happily ever after.

She is survived by her nieces, Eileen (Phil) Diekemper, Kathleen (Pat) Logan, and Elizabeth Crosthwait; nephews, John Crosthwait and Richard Crosthwait; as well as several great nieces and nephews.

Special thanks to Westminster-Canterbury of the Blue Ridge for years of care. Also special thanks to Dorene Russo, her loving and devoted aide.

A funeral service at Arlington National Cemetery will be announced at a later date.

Preddy Funeral Home in Gordonsville, Virginia, is assisting the family with arrangements.