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Socialite 'attends' her own wake with cigarette, champagne


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Socialite 'attends' her own wake with cigarette, champagne

By Julianne Cassidy. CREATED Apr 28, 2014

New Orleans socialite and philanthropist Mickey Easterling died on April 14, yet attended her final party on April 22. And by party, we mean wake, with a cigarette and a champagne flute in hand.

The body of Easterling, 83, was propped up on a wrought iron bench in the Saenger Theater on Canal Street. In her left hand sat a cigarette in a fashionable holder, and a favored Waterford Champagne flute was placed in her right hand. A bottle of Easterling's favorite Champagne, Veuve Clicquot, was displayed to her right on a small side table.

“My goal was to make her look even prettier than she was in real life, because she was a larger-than-life person," Easterling's friend Sammy Steele III tells The Advocate. Steele applied Easterling's cosmetics for the party and drew from Easterling's own wardrobe to dress her. She selected a floral print dress by Leonard, a black hat, hot pink boa and a diamond-studded pin that read "B--ch."

According to The Advocate, Easterling's daughter Nanci Myke said, “It’s a really nice way to say, ‘The party’s over.’”

Easterling is remembered for her vast New Orleans philanthropic endeavors, including being a member of the Orleans Levee District, the Audubon Park board and the Delta Festival Ballet.

Julianne Cassidy

Julianne Cassidy

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A city girl gone country, Philadelphia-bred journalist Julianne Cassidy relocated to be a Nashville-based digital editor for Scripps Media, Inc.