Gwendolyn Merritt McCarthyGwendolyn Merritt McCarthy of Bastrop, LA., died March 4, 2017 after a brief illness at the age of 78.Gwen was born on April 14, 1938 in Yell County Arkansas. She moved to Moscow, Arkansas as a child and graduated from Linwood High School. She then attended college at Arkansas A&M, where she met Buddy McCarthy on a blind date. They eventually became engaged one day over her lunch break and began a wonderful life together. After marriage Gwen and Buddy lived in Pine Bluff Arkansas, then moved to Bastrop in 1968, where they were kept busy raising their three children. They were also very active in community life, particularly the First United Methodist Church, where they were faithful members. She spent her life devoted to her family, which was improved immeasurably by her presence and enduring influence. Gwen is survived by her devoted husband of 57 years, Thomas (Buddy/Mac) F. McCarthy, Jr, her daughters, son, and children in law Lisa and Ken Stewart of Dallas, TX; Kathy and Patrick O'Dowd of Rancho Mirage, CA; and Thomas and Dana McCarthy of West Monroe, LA., as well as seven grandchildren: Quinn O'Dowd, Merritt Stewart Mann, Carrick O'Dowd, Payton Stewart, Avery Stewart, Jacob McCarthy, and Kyndall McCarthy. She is also survived by her sister Sandra McBryde of Nashville, TN., and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, Doler and Inez Merritt.A memorial is scheduled for Wednesday, March 8 at 1:00 PM at the First United Methodist Church. Visitation will be held Tuesday March 7 at Cox Funeral Home of Bastrop from 5:00 -7:00 PM. Those who wish to donate in her memory are welcome to give to the First United Methodist Church, Bastrop, LA., to which she was dedicated for many years of her life.Cox Funeral Home, Bastrop, LA.