Virginia (Dodds) Smith, 98, of East Alton, died at 4:05 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 7, 2015, at VIP Manor in Wood River.
She was born March 16, 1916, in Kentucky, the daughter to the late Thomas and Lena (Fox) Dodds.
She and Omar Thomas Smith Sr. were married in Missouri in 1940 and he preceded her in death on June 14, 1979.
Mrs. Smith was a first- and second-grade elementary school teacher with the Alton School system for many years. She also was a genealogist, crafter, a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution and a member of the former First Baptist Church of South Roxana, where she enjoyed doing church work and singing with the Sue Bonnet Ladies Quartet. Her skill and love of singing even earned her a scholarship to SIU-Normal, where she received a bachelor and master degree.
Survivors include a daughter and son-in-law, Anne and James Simpson of Lenoir City, Tenn.; a son and two daughters-in-law, William Ray and Theresa Smith and Deborah Smith of Bethalto; eight grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren and a sister-in-law, Evelyn Dodds of Edwardsville.
Besides her husband and parents, she was preceded in death by a son, “O.T.” Omar Thomas Smith Jr.; two sisters, Evelyn Ardeuseur and Elizabeth Netzer; and four brothers, Gordon, Eugene, William and Earl Dodds.
Visitation will be from 9:30 a.m. until time of services at 10 a.m. Friday, Jan. 9, 2015, at Paynic Home for Funerals with Pastor Casey Lawson officiating. Graveside services will follow at 1:30 p.m. at Tower Heights Cemetery in West Frankfort, Ill.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Crosspoint Southern Baptist Church.
Online information and guestbook may be found at www.paynicfh.com.