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Betty Marie Smith

January 22, 1926 -
July 15, 2019

Betty Marie Smith, 93, passed away quietly in the early morning hours of Monday, July 15th, 2019, surrounded by family. A graveside service will be held at Masonic-Odd Fellow Cemetery in Benton, IL at 11:00am on Saturday, July 20th, 2019.

Betty was born on a cold, snowy, Southern Illinois night on January 22nd, 1…read more

Betty Marie Smith, 93, passed away quietly in the early morning hours of Monday, July 15th, 2019, surrounded by family. A graveside service will be held at Masonic-Odd Fellow Cemetery in Benton, IL at 11:00am on Saturday, July 20th, 2019.

Betty was born on a cold, snowy, Southern Illinois night on January 22nd, 1926. Unusual for the times, she grew up the beloved only child to William, an electrician at Rend Coal Co., and Marie Gray Russell. The family lived on a small farm near Rend City. Betty’s parents always valued education for their only daughter, and she enrolled at SIU at the height of World War II in 1942. It was there that she met Victor Smith on a blind date, and they were married in 1944 while he served in the Army Air Corps. After the war, the couple lived on a farm raising corn, soybeans, and Polled Hereford cattle. Betty kept busy raising their three children: Rusty, Vicki Lynn, and Linda Sue. While the children were still young, both Victor and Betty both commuted to SIU to complete the degrees they put on hold during the war. At that time, Betty fulfilled her dream to become a teacher in the primary grades in Benton, Illinois. Victor’s job eventually moved the couple to Macomb, IL, where they lived for the next 20 years. Betty kept extremely busy as a realtor, and she was involved in many parts of the community from the Macomb Planning Commission, to the WIU chapter of the Chi Omega sorority, to the local board of the American Cancer Society. Eventually, family beckoned Betty and Victor to Champaign where they each lived until passing.

One of Betty’s great passions in the latter part of her life was serving in the General Federation of Women’s Clubs. She began with the GFWC in Macomb, and she continued her service when she moved to Champaign. It was there where she served as Chapter President of the Woman’s Club of Champaign-Urbana as well as District 19 President.

Aside from a life of service, Betty was a dedicated member of several bridge clubs. She also enjoyed cheering the Fighting Illini, reading, cooking, working several daily crosswords, and – above all – spending time with her friends and family. Her favorite television show was “Classic Gospel” which she watched each Saturday at 6pm. She also enjoyed a good joke – even at her own expense – and her distinct laugh and homespun expressions will be sorely missed.

Betty was preceded in death by both parents, her husband, Victor, and her daughter, Vicki Lynn Snyder.

She is survived by family who will love and miss their “Nanny” terribly including daughter, Linda (Terry) Snyder of Suwanee, Georgia, and son, Russell “Rusty” Smith of Champaign; granddaughters, Melissa Snyder of Cincinnati, OH, Cynthia (Tom) Adamek of Champaign, IL, Erin (Christian) Romeiser of Charlotte, NC, and grandson, Brent (Allison) Snyder, also of Charlotte, NC; and 9 great-grandchildren, Ryan Snyder, Andrew Studebaker, Antonia Adamek, Alexandra Adamek, Lauren Gray Romeiser, Brennan Romeiser, Tucker Romeiser, Mason Snyder, and Anna Snyder.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in memory of Betty Smith (or in honor of Lauren Gray Romeiser) to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation – Charlotte Chapter. Online contributions can be made at http://fightcf.cff.org/goto/laurenromeiser
Checks may also be sent to CFF-Charlotte, Attn: Stephanie Cherry, 4600 Park Rd. Suite 100, Charlotte, NC 28209.

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