Lavana Pitts-Ariail

Jan. 04, 2013 @ 11:05 PM

Lavana Pitts-Ariail, of Spartanburg, died Thursday, January 3, 2013, at her home. Born in Gatlinburg, TN, she was the daughter of the late J. Seldon Cogdill and Stella Ogle Cogdill-Lillard.

Lavana was a loving mother and grandmother, she was a member of Fairforest Baptist Church and attended Arcadia United Methodist Church. She loved the outdoors and was an avid gardener. She was also a National Accredited Flower Show Judge, former member of the Garden Club of South Carolina Board, and a long time member of the Fairforest Garden Club where she served as president. She enjoyed flower arranging which she shared with friends and her church family. Lavana was also a member of the John Ogle Chapter of Colonial Dames XVII and is a certified member of the Tennessee First Family. She received much joy from her grandchildren, friends, and from gardening and sharing. She was retired from District 6 Administrative Offices and her ministry was helping others, especially shut-ins.

Lavana is survived by her husband, Thomas “Tommy” M. Ariail; sons, C. Irvin Pitts Jr. (Ann) of Lexington, SC, R. Cullen Pitts (Jennifer), J. Joby Pitts (Laura), and W. Tipton Pitts (Cathy), all of Spartanburg, SC; step-children, Lisa S. Ohemig (Leib) of Greensboro, NC, Amy Knowlton (Randy) of Simpsonville, SC, and Tom Ariail (Angela) of Duncan, SC; seven grandchildren, Julia Pitts of Lexington, SC, William Pitts, Caroline Pitts, Tyler Walters, Colby Pitts, Morgan Lydia Pitts, and Hawksley Tipton Pitts, all of Spartanburg; three step-grandchildren, Zak Knowlton and Adam Knowlton of Simpsonville, SC, and Ariail Siggins of Moore, SC; sisters, Kay Cogdill McConnell of Warren, PA, and Joyce Pitts Purcell of Atlanta, GA; and numerous nieces and nephews whom she was very fond of. She was predeceased by her first husband, Charles Irvin Pitts. They moved to Spartanburg in 1960.

Visitation will be 1:30-2:45 PM Sunday, January 6, 2013, in the sanctuary at Fairforest Baptist Church. Funeral services will follow at 3:00 PM at the church, conducted by the Rev. Monty King and the Rev. James B. Carter. Burial will be in Fairforest Baptist Church Cemetery, conducted by the Rev. David Ervin.

Honorary escort will be members of the Fairforest Garden Club.

Memorials may be made to the Cancer Association of Spartanburg & Cherokee County, PO Box 1582, Spartanburg, SC 29304.

The family is at the home.

An online guest register is available at