Betty Joan Smith, 94, of Topeka, passed away Monday, November 21, 2022.
She was born October 20, 1928, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the daughter of Fay and Elizabeth (Schick) Bennett. She graduated from Topeka High School. After graduation, she attended the University of Kansas and received a Bachelor’s Degree.
Joan began working for Stormont Hospital as a Medical Technologist after graduation from the University of Kansas. She also worked for Santa Fe Hospital and retired from Menningers after 30 years. In addition to working as a Medical Technologist she helped manage her husband’s Architecture and Rental business.
She met her future husband, Sherwood, at choir practice at First Christian Church in 1953. Following choir practice on Thursdays, they would end the evening having tea at the Purple Cow. After a short, few months, Joan married R. Sherwood “Bud” Smith on September 11, 1953 in Topeka, Kansas. To their union in marriage, they had five children, Sheree, Cary, Brian, Bruce and Mona.
She was a long time member of the West Side Christian Church, of Topeka and was a member of the church choir. Joan was also a member of the Minerva Club, SAI Sorority, Daughters of the Revolution, AO Pi Sorority, Topeka Civic Chorus and the Shawnee Yacht Club. After her retirement, she volunteered at the Topeka Public Library in the Topeka Room.
Joan had a passion for singing. She started singing with her mother at a very young age and would sing at weddings, funerals and various events as a hired soloist. She also enjoyed playing bridge with friends, playing piano, reading about history and studying genealogy.
Survivors include her children, Sheree (Phillip Gonzales) Smith, Cary Phillips, Brian (Viola Audrey) Smith, Bruce Smith and Mona Morrissey; grandchildren, Taaron Gonzales, Derrick Gonzales, Max Phillips, Mia Phillips, Jessica Smith, Crystal Strachan, Nicholas Smith, Mimi Morrissey and Summer Morrissey; five great grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Sherwood Smith; parents and brother, James Bennett.
Honoring Joan’s wishes, cremation is planned. A private memorial service will take place for the family. Joan will be laid to rest at Mount Hope Cemetery with her husband. Memorial contributions may be made to Southern Poverty Law Center, 400 Washington Avenue, Montgomery, AL 36104, Topeka Rescue Mission, Inc. PO Box 8350, Topeka, KS 66608 and West Side Christian Church, 432 SW Lindenwood, Topeka, KS 66606.
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