Obituary for Florence Elizabeth Smith (Shanahan)
Florence Elizabeth Smith of Farwell, peacefully passed away on Good Friday, March 30, among those who loved her. Achieving her final goals, she celebrated her long anticipated 90th birthday, returned from the nursing home to sleep in her own bed, eat her favorite meals and end her days in the beloved house she shared for decades with her late husband, Bill.
Florence was born in Pontiac, Michigan on March 18, 1928, to Eva and Walter Shanahan and was joined soon after by brother, Claude. Graduation from Pontiac (Central) High School in 1946 was followed by clerical employment, then marriage to Bill in September of 1948. Son Michael and daughter Debra soon followed. They then settled into their new home in Waterford for a family life well lived together. Florence pursued continuing education in accounting, increasing knowledge and improving professional stature until retirement as Season Ticket Accountant for The Detroit Symphony Orchestra. She and Bill then sold their home in Waterford and moved to Farwell to begin their long anticipated next chapter.
Retirement in Farwell afforded Florence the time to give of herself completely to the community. She volunteered at the Clare Hospital for almost thirty years, working everywhere from the emergency room to the gift shop, proudly and deservedly becoming President of the Volunteers. Florence also taught needlework in conjunction with MSU County Extension and judged the same at the Isabella County Fair. With fellow members of her church, Florence collected clothing, housewares, toys and furniture for those who lost all in home fires. She taught Sunday school to children and for years, baked communion bread. She worked at polling places during elections. Florence spent her retirement in cheerful, joyful service to community.
Florence was also the greatest grandmother, not only to her granddaughters Lee, Jennifer and Elizabeth, but to any child in need of understanding, kindness, guidance or a hug, and for any adult who needed the same.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, April 7, at Living Hope Lutheran Church in Farwell with visitation beginning at 1:00pm and the service following at 2:00pm, with luncheon and reminiscence after. Please consider contributions in Florence’s name to the Clare Hospital Volunteers and share your memories and condolences on line at www.CampbellStocking.com