Ellen Lorraine (Smith) McKinley, age 96, of Jensen Beach, Florida, passed away Sunday, November 6, 2022, at Tiffany Hall Hospice. Born September 15, 1926, in Royal Oak, Michigan, she was the daughter of the late John Gardner Smith and Lalah Mattix.
Mrs. McKinley led a long and fruitful life. She was the first and only of her five siblings to graduate from college, and in later years, traveled throughout the U.S. and Europe.
She touched hundreds of lives during the 13 years she taught at Nova High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
A respected educator, she eventually became head of that school’s Social Studies Department. Mrs. McKinley was a long-time member of the Stuart, Florida, Church of Christ, where she taught Sunday School and was a valued member of the Ladies Bible class. One of her greatest joys was spending time with her family.
Mrs. McKinley grew up in humble circumstances during the Great Depression. Throughout her life, she recognized the needs of the less fortunate, from her teenage years as a camp counselor for underprivileged children, as a youthful member of the Urban League advocating for the fair treatment of Black people, to her teaching career when she helped students in their time of greatest need. She will be greatly missed by her friends and family.
She is survived by her children, Michael Glenn McKinley, and Nancy (McKinley) Moreland, and her grandsons, James McKinley, Stefan Moreland, and Ian Moreland.
She was preceded in death by her first husband, Robert McKinley, and second husband, Roy Luxton, and one son, Thomas Scott McKinley.
Private funeral services will be held Wednesday, November 16, 2022, at Hughes-Taylor Funeral Home-Borden Chapel. Burial to follow in Walnut Hill Cemetery.