Lula Vaughn Smith

December 28, 2021


Lula Vaughn Smith, of Covington, passed away Tuesday, December 28, 2021, at the age of 95.

Lula was born August 3, 1926, in Jefferson County to Walter Cox & Sally Holton Cox. Lula graduated high school in 1943 and went on to UGA where she received a degree in business, which began her many endeavors.

On June 15, 1943, Lula married Bill Vaughn, it was a beautiful home wedding with a scorching temperature of 102 in the shade, she went to work at the Royston Bus station and Western Union. In 1944 Lula attended Athens business college and received a degree in business, after completing college she accepted a job at TY Cobb Memorial Hospital in Royston. In 1949 Lula moved to Gainesville, Ga and accepted a position as an assistant bookkeeper for a Pontiac dealership. Later on, she worked for Liberty Finance, where she was keeping books for 13 finance companies. While working Lula attended school to obtain her A/H license and also attended tax school.

On June 20th, 1952, Lula gave birth to a son Wayne Harrison Vaughn (the light of her life) Then in 1954 they relocated to Covington Ga, and 4 days later she joined the First Baptist Church of Covington, she continued to work for Liberty Finance and eventually opened her own finance company known as Newton Finance, where she worked many hours, taught finance classes in several surrounding cities as she was determined to have a successful life. Soon after Lula purchased Covington Credit Bureau & formed a collection agency in Covington, then in Butts Co. finance co., and credit bureau & collection agency in Jackson. After 24 ½ years Lula lost her husband on January 11, 1968, at which later that year she sold Butts Co. Finance.

As time went on in July 1970 Lula remarried Robert Smith, they had a great marriage of 23 years, at which was a blessing. Bob helped Lula in many ways, he was a good husband and a wonderful friend. Robert (Bob) Smith passed away March 17, 1993. In January 1971, Newton Finance was sold. But the office was kept open for a bookkeeping and tax service. (She had been doing tax work since 1949) Lula then decided to go to the University of Georgia to get her property and casualty license and changed the name of her business to SMITH INSURANCE AGENCY which is still in operation.

Lula Vaughn Smith was not only a businesswoman but also was very active in her community, Ms. Lula served 4 years as State President Loan Auxiliary with Senator Culver Kidd. She served as State President Elks Auxiliary 1967 - 68 at which time she helped collect funds to purchase the 1st public water cooler donated to the Lion’s Park in honor of  Bill Vaughn, picnic tables and benches at the Lion's Park. Ms. Lula was State President of  American Legion Auxiliary 1991-1992 at which time she visited and carried refreshments to the Veteran Home in Atlanta and Milledgeville and helped collect funds for St Jude Children’s Hospital sponsored by Danny Thomas.

Lula always enjoyed working at her church, she served as the President of Sarah Thornley Missionary Circle, taught Sunday school and Georgia’s leader and was a member of the choir of First Baptist Church, cub scout leader for 3 years as Wayne was in cub scouts, and always served on several committees. She also served as the president of the GreenThumb Garden Club (where she helped plant shrubbery at Fiquitte School), member of the D.A.R and was a past regent lady in the Huntingdon chapter, member of the eastern star, she worked with the insurance commissioner Jimmy Bentley on the mental health facility in Milledgeville, volunteered at Newton General Hospital (typing medical records) served as treasurer of the gift shop at the hospital, as you can see Ms. Lula was a very busy active lady, she even ran for Tax Commissioner in 1968 and 1976, Didn't win but Smith Insurance has one of her campaign posters hanging on the wall in the office.

Once again Lula Vaughn Smith married at the age of 77 to Winston C. Rachels, who a few years later passed away, they would tell a story of how they met on the school bus in South Georgia, Winston claimed he had had a crush on her then. but she didn't give him the time of day, they saw each other in Waffle House and spoke, at which time they began talking, and soon it was like teenagers – the office phone was either ringing with him calling her or she was calling him, they soon after married.

Ms. Lula also owned rental property “that kept everyone busy” and owns, “The Lula Building” on the square in Covington, Georgia that has rental spaces and her Smith Insurance Agency.

Ms. Lula’s own words were “I contribute my success to God! And do my best to live a good Christian life, I love people and pray for all every night.”

What a remarkable life she has lived. The memories she has shared, the advice she has given and many teachings. We love you Ms. Lula.

She was preceded in death by her three husbands, William W. (Bill) Vaughn, Robert E. (Bob) Smith, Winston C Rachels; parents, Walter H and Sally Lou Holton Cox; sister, Lucile White, Mary E. Rachels, Lyle A Cox Davies; brothers, Woodrow Wilson Cox, John H. Cox, Walter H. Cox.

Survivors include her son, Wayne Vaughn (Pam); grandchildren, Tonya Coe (Donnie), Dustin Hilton (Dixie); great-grandchildren, Dylan Coe, Dawson Coe, Dayton Hilton; as well as several nieces, nephews, and other family members and special friends.

A Funeral Service for Mrs. Smith will be held Sunday, January 2, 2022, 3:00 P.M., at First Baptist Church, 1139 Usher Street NW, in Covington, with Dr. Cody McNutt and Rev. Len Strozier officiating and interment following in Lawnwood Memorial Park, Covington. Friends are invited to visit with the family at Caldwell & Cowan Funeral Home, 1215 Access Road, in Covington, Saturday, January 1, from 2:00 – 4:00 P.M. and again that afternoon from 6:00 – 8:00 P.M. Flowers are accepted, or donations may be made to First Baptist Church of Covington. 

Governor Brian Kemp’s latest executive order has eliminated restrictions on large gatherings; however, CDC guidelines recommend social distancing (6 feet apart) and wearing of masks while in public. Caldwell & Cowan Funeral Home requests that you observe these recommendations while in our funeral home attending visitations and/or services. 

This obituary was prepared with love and affection by Ms. Smith’s family.



To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Lula Vaughn Smith, please visit our floral store.


January 1, 2022

2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Caldwell & Cowan Funeral Home and Dogwood Hill Crematory - Access Road Location
1215 Access Road
Covington, GA

January 1, 2022

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Caldwell & Cowan Funeral Home and Dogwood Hill Crematory - Access Road Location
1215 Access Road
Covington, GA

Funeral Service
January 2, 2022

3:00 PM
First Baptist Church (Covington)
1139 Usher Street
Covington, GA

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