Laurel Smith, who passed on in Santa Barbara in early November, was a woman of wide talents and interests. Laurel was a teacher, a prominent dog trainer, an artist, a lover of history and well-written mysteries, a basketball fan, an active church member, and a fine friend and a good neighbor.
Raised in Indiana, Laurel retained those self-reliant Hoosier values throughout her long life. After graduating from Hiram College, Laurel had a career teaching in Germany during the Berlin Wall years. Whenever there was a school vacation, she took full advantage of that time for travel adventures throughout Europe and beyond.
Eventually returning to Indiana, she married a childhood friend and teacher, Gene Smith. A California teaching position for Gene beckoned, and they moved to Santa Barbara, where they raised their two children, Bethany and Brooke. Family activities revolved around Gene’s teaching, their active Christian Science church membership, outreach to others, and their work with dogs – Pugs and Akitas. Gene passed on ten years ago, but Laurel continued with her inspired sharing with the community, especially those who were housebound.
Family members who are lovingly remembering Laurel are her son, Brooke Smith, her daughter Bethany Bush and grandson Zac Bush, all of California, her sister, Linda Rossow, of Tallahassee, Florida, and a host of many others.