MARQUETTE - Beverly U. Smith, age 79, of Marquette, fell asleep in death on the morning of Tuesday, January 7, 2014, at her home, in the loving, comforting care of her family and Lake Superior Hospice.
Beverly was born May 11, 1934 in Escanaba, a daughter of Ernest and Gladys (Lamirand) LaFave. Her father worked in the lumber camps and later in the mines, so she grew up all over the Upper Peninsula, but mainly in the Gwinn and Big Bay areas.
As a young girl, she cooked in the lumber camps and left school to care for her ill mother. On April 9, 1956, Beverly married Edwin P. Smith in Marquette, and together the couple made their home in Marquette where they raised their family. Edwin was an ironworker and worked at various job sites, returning home in the evenings to Beverly and children. Beverly was very proud to be a homemaker and enjoyed the tasks associated with being a devoted wife and mother. To her, family was everything! As the family grew, and grandchildren came, Beverly gladly accepted the opportunity to care for her children's children. She babysat, fed, clothed, and was a loving companion to her grandchildren. She was known to make daily calls to her children and later her grown grandchildren, giving them advice and checking up on them. "Grandma Smith" as she was affectionately known, was always looking out for the best interests of her grandchildren and those grandchildren that were out of the area, often received a care package. Most recently, with the addition of great-grandchildren, and prior to her illness, Beverly proclaimed herself "Old Granny." She was proud of every one of her children and grandkids and knew their likes and dislikes, even to making her trademark roast beef sandwiches, custom made and labeled for each child. She will be remembered for her love of cooking large family dinners, her capacity to think of others before herself, and first and foremost as a loving wife, mother, and grandmother. Beverly was a member of the Marquette Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses and enjoyed studying her Bible.
Beverly is survived by her husband of 57 years, Edwin; her children, Debra Smith of Marquette, Kelly (Don) Mankee of Baraga, and Guy (Linda) Smith of Marquette; her grandchildren, Jennifer (Frank) Fadenholz, Sarah (Jeremy) Misale, Don E. Mankee, Amber (Henry) Croschere, and Jacob Smith; great-grandchildren, Tyler, Lydia, Rachael, and Nathan Fadenholz, and Elijah Croschere; her sisters, Phyllis (Edward) Fairbanks of Shafer, MN and Arlene (Brent) Turner of Windsor, VT; brothers, Ernest LaFave of Escanaba, Jim LaFave of Ontario, Canada, and Richard "Chic" (Gloria) LaFave of Gwinn; many nieces and nephews.
Beverly was preceded in death by her parents; and sisters-in-law, Lucy and Carol LaFave.
The family will receive relatives and friends at the Swanson-Lundquist Funeral Home on Saturday, January 11, beginning at 1:00 pm until the time of service at 2:00 pm. Bruce Turner of the Marquette Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses will give the memorial talk of comfort. A reception will follow in the reception area located at the funeral home. Honoring, "Old Granny," Beverly's grandkids will serve as her honorary escorts.
Condolences may be expressed online at swansonlundquistfuneralhome.com