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1927 Juanita Barton Cole 2023

Juanita Barton Cole

December 21, 1927 — September 13, 2023

Juanita Barton Cole passed away on September 13, 2023. She was born on December 21, 1927 in Horatio, Arkansas, the daughter of Essie Mae Brown and John Barton. She married Luther Francis Cole on March 9, 1945, and began a marriage of 68 years, that ended with his death on July 26, 2013, though her love and devotion to Luther continued on until her death. Juanita enjoyed a long life and was blessed with good health and a sound mind well into her 90’s, her recent decline only a small fraction of her life, for which her family is forever grateful.

Juanita was a volunteer at her children’s schools, a Cub Scout den mother, active in the Baton Rouge Bar Auxiliary, and a longtime member of Broadmoor Baptist Church. She was a tireless campaign worker and advisor in her husband’s political career, which included several successful elections to public office. She was his indispensable partner and supporter when they lived in New Orleans while he served on the Louisiana Supreme Court.

Juanita is survived by her three children, Frances Harbour and husband Robert, Jeffrey Cole and his wife Polly Pugh Cole and Christopher Warren Cole, grandchildren Elizabeth Harbour Rutledge and husband Tracy, Katherine Harbour Cangelosi, Jeffrey Bryan Cole, Patrick Francis Cole and wife Sarah, Caroline Cole Smolkin and husband David, Anna Catherine Cole, Christopher Daniel Cole and wife Melisssa, Catherine Cole Petty and husband Cameron, and great grandchildren Grace, Ivy and James Rutledge, Eloise and Amelia Cangelosi, and Oscar, Benjamin and Caroline Cole Smolkin and Marin Elizabeth and George Francis Cole.

A family graveside service was held on September 18, 2023.

The family is grateful to the staff of St. James Place and Hospice of Baton Rouge for the excellent care given to Juanita in her final days.

Juanita’s life was one of love and devotion for her children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and especially for her husband, Luther. In these roles, she was exceptional and the loving example she and Luther provided to their family will live on for many years to come.

To order memorial trees in memory of Juanita Barton Cole, please visit our tree store.


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