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Rupert-Durham Chapel
Thursday February 11th, 2021
4:00pm - 7:00pm

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Ione E Smith

There is no doubt that Ione Smith lived a life richly blessed with many warm memories that touched the hearts of many. Her family meant the world to her and there simply wasn’t anything that she wouldn’t do for each and every one of them. Ione lived her life serving others. She believed in the idea of gratitude and never missed an opportunity to extend her appreciation toward others. She will be deeply missed and warmly remembered by all who knew and loved her. The Roaring Twenties were a time in history that were filled with feelings of freedom and independence. Ray and Thelma (Fitzsimmons) Jacobs welcomed home their newborn baby girl, Ione, on August 19, 1925, in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Ione’s arrival brought much happiness and joy to the family home. Growing up in Kalamazoo, Ione attended local schools and lived a typical childhood of the times. Her parents were hard-working. Her father started out at Bryant's Papermill in Kalamazoo and later worked at Gilbert’s Chocolate Factory in Jackson. Ione pitched in around the house and helped take care of her grandmother at a young age. She met Alfred Everett Smith, the man who would change the course of her life forever while attending several family events. Introduced by her stepfather, the two of them hit it off from the start. Ione and Al joined in marriage in 1944 and settled into an apartment together. Over the years, they welcomed home three children; Robert, a daughter that died one day after her birth, and Alfred. Saving their resources, in 1952, the family was delighted to move to Vicksburg after purchasing their first home. As a family, they enjoyed making the best of memories. They took several summer trips and enjoyed finding their favorite camping spots. The family always had a dog. Pickles was Ione’s favorite to cuddle. She managed the kids and the household as well as worked at Country Maid Bakery in Vicksburg before retiring from Ihling Brothers. Faithful stewards, she and Al raised their children with a strong foundation and regularly attended the Evangelical United Brethren Church. Much later they merged with the United Methodist Church. Deeply devoted, Ione preferred the Oshtemo United Methodist Church where she attended for many years. Above all, she loved taking care of her family. Ione was a fabulous cook and made homemade noodles and pies. She always cooked from scratch! Her family was blessed with her easy-going personality and sense of humor! Ione held many special interests over the years. A fan of Big Band music from her era, she loved to dance and never passed up an opportunity to have Al twirl her on the dance floor. The two of them were proud members of the Fraternal Order of the Eagles Aerie 526. She made many lasting friendships there and even took a turn as State Madam President from 1989-1990. An avid Detroit Tigers baseball fan, Ione watched as many games on TV as she could. Win or lose, she was faithful to her Tigers and was ready to cheer them on season after season. Ione also loved to read novels, play cards, or board games, and enjoyed visiting with family and friends. Anytime she was surrounded by people, her heart was full! Thoughtful and kind, Ione was especially close with her many special nieces and nephews. She never forgot to send them, as well as many other relatives, a special birthday card that always included a dollar bill! A wonderful grandmother, Ione loved to attend many of their special events and enjoyed keeping up with their many accomplishments over the years. She and Al modeled a beautiful marriage. They enjoyed a remarkable sixty-five years together before he passed in 2010. She missed him immensely and leaned on her many friends and family to see her through. Ione was an extraordinary woman of her time. Living a life span that many others are not so lucky to experience provided her with countless rich opportunities to share with her loving family. May her loved ones and special friends never doubt her love for them and may her cherished memories live on in their hearts forever. Ione E. Smith, of Kalamazoo (formerly of Vicksburg), passed away peacefully at Park Village Pines on February 7, 2021. Ione is survived by her son, Alfred Edward (Ruby) Smith of Kalamazoo, seven grandchildren, twenty-two great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren; her daughter-in-law, Shirley Smith of Georgia; five siblings: Fred Jacobs of Colorado, Bob Harding of Climax, Don Harding, Alfred James (Diana) Harding, Mary (Tony) Plyley of Kalamazoo. Ione was preceded in death by her parents, Ray (Barbara) Jacobs and Thelma (Harry) Harding; her husband, Al; infant daughter, Alicia Elaine Smith; son, Robert Smith; her brother, Jim Jacobs; one grandson, one great-grandson and one great-granddaughter. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation, Park Village Pines Employee Appreciation Fund, Elara Caring Hospice, or the charity of choice.

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A candle was lit in memory of Ione Smith

Marty (Ruth's) little sister Feb 15 2021 8:21 PM

Ed and Ruby, I am so sorry for your loss. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers

Karen K Mattmiller Feb 11 2021 8:54 PM

A candle was lit in memory of Ione Smith

Karen K Mattmiller Feb 11 2021 8:49 PM

A candle was lit in memory of Ione Smith

Angela Wilson Feb 11 2021 7:28 PM

A candle was lit in memory of Ione Smith

Paul and Beth Harding Feb 11 2021 2:18 PM

A candle was lit in memory of Ione Smith

Mary Ann Kudary Feb 11 2021 8:35 AM

Hugs for you both! Your mother was so lucky to have such devoted children and grandchildren! She will be missed

Mary Ann Kudary Feb 11 2021 8:31 AM

A candle was lit in memory of Ione Smith

Michael J King Feb 9 2021 6:13 PM

Beautiful in Blue was purchased for the family of Ione E Smith.

Feb 9 2021 4:43 PM

A candle was lit in memory of Ione Smith

Terri McKinnon Feb 9 2021 1:03 PM

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