Mary Louise Eisenhardt, 96, of Madison, Indiana, died Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, at the Thornton Terrace Health Campus in Hanover, Indiana.
She was born on July 30, 1925, in Madison, to Ebenezer Webster and Leona Doris Leinenweber Eisenhardt. She was a graduate of Madison High School and matriculated to Hanover College, earning a bachelor’s degree in 1947 and later a master’s degree from Indiana University. Her lifelong career in education and athletics began in the New Albany and Salem, Indiana, school systems, teaching health and physical education. She later returned to her hometown in 1953 and taught and coached at Madison until her retirement in 1991. Her participation in intramural sports while attending college inspired her very early in her career to introduce female athletics into competitive high school sports by establishing girls’ basketball, volleyball, softball, swimming and tennis teams at Madison. Her career was noted in 1990 with the Marian Archer Award, a state award for outstanding achievement in women’s athletics, and after leading several of her teams to sectional and semistate finals and track and swimming athletes to state the finals. She was inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006 and her distinguished coaching career was also honored in 2015 when the track at Madison Consolidated High School was named “Mary Louise Eisenhardt Track.” She was particularly pleased to be recognized by Girls Inc. as recipient of the “She Knows Where She’s Going” Award in 2013. She sponsored the Girls Athletic Association and was a driving spirit in the Madison Cubs Booster Club. She taught swimming and lifesaving courses for the City of Madison and the American Red Cross at the Crystal Beach Complex, as well as maintaining a near-daily constitution of walking her central west end neighborhood and the Madison riverfront. She was a devoted member of Trinity United Methodist Church in downtown Madison where she served on various boards and committees for many years and volunteering in the service of others.
Survivors include her cousins, Joyce Hooker Ashbrook of Hanover, Shirley Hooker Griffith of Pearland, Texas, Harry Leinenweber, Mark Hooker Ashbrook, Alicia Nay, Tobey Nay-Tucker, Kenda Louise Marsh, Lori Vorwerk, and several other relatives.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her cousins Sandra Hooker Nay and Kenneth Griffith; and her special friends, John and Betty McKinney.
Funeral services will be at 1 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 20, at Trinity United Methodist Church in downtown Madison. Interment will follow in Springdale Cemetery in downtown Madison. Visitation is 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday at the Morgan & Nay Funeral Centre in Madison and noon until time of services Thursday at the church.
Memorial contributions may be made to Trinity United Methodist Church through the funeral home. Online condolences and memorials, www.morgan-nay.com.