Sylvia Smith

Sylvia Smith

Mrs. Sylvia Jones Smith, age 90, of Athens Ga., formerly of Austell Ga., died September 14, 2012 at St Mary’s Hospice House of Alzheimer’s Disease. Born in Fort Valley, Ga., August 22, 1922; she was the daughter of the late William and Essie Jones. She was a graduate of Fort Valley High School and the Atlanta School of Cosmetology. Sylvia led a life of dedicated service to her family, church and community; she was never still. By the age of 20 she had moved to Atlanta, completed Cosmetology School, and opened a beauty shop. She soon met the love of her life, Henry McCord Smith Sr.; the two were married in 1942. Intending to start a family, she sold her shop; but WWII intervened and Henry was called to serve on the European Eastern Front. When he returned the couple settled in the East Lake area of Atlanta and became active in Alexander Memorial Presbyterian Church. In 1961 with their two sons they moved to Smyrna where they joined Calvary Presbyterian Church and Sylvia opened the King Williams Beauty Salon. In 1969, as charter members, they helped to found Southminster Presbyterian Church where Sylvia remained a member lifelong. In Cobb County she was named Mother of the Year in 1970 and Woman of the year in 1971. She and Henry moved to Lawrenceville in 1984 where they were active in Lawrenceville Presbyterian Church and community affairs. She received the Gwinnett County AARP Citizenship Award in 1989. In 1995 Sylvia, who had promoted and raised funds for Presbyterian Village, Austell, eagerly became one of its first independent living residents. She was thus happily reunited with Southminster Presbyterian Church. By 2000, however, she decided to move to Lanier Gardens in Athens to be near her children and grandchildren. She affiliated with Central Presbyterian Church and served actively in Women of The Church. She also became a volunteer at St Mary’s Hospital and worked there until 2007 when her health failed and she entered Arbor Terrace. Sylvia served her various churches in many ways including president of Women of the Church several times, numerous committees including pulpit committees; and at Southminster she became the first female elder. She was awarded an honorary life time membership in Presbyterian Women of the Church in 1978 and 1991; and she served the Presbyterian Church at large as representative to Cherokee Presbytery, Commissioner to National General Assembly, moderator of Women of the Church in the newly formed Synod of the South Atlantic (Georgia, Florida and South Carolina) in the early 1900’s, and delegate to historic Reunification Commission of PCUSA in 1983. Survivors include sons Henry McCord Smith (Gail) and William Paul Smith of Athens; grandchildren Sarah McCord Smith, Ann Katherine Smith (Russell Ashe), William Bradford Smith and John McCord Smith. She was preceded in death by her beloved husband of 42 years, Henry McCord Smith Sr., in 1984. Services will be led by Dr Glen Doak in the Chapel of Lord and Stephens West at 11:00 am September 17, 2012. The family will receive visitors at Lord and Stephens West September 16, 2012 from 6:00-8:00 pm. Internment will take place at 3:00 pm Westside Cemetery 1680 Ralph David Abernathy S W, Atlanta, GA 30310. Lord and Stephens West is in charge of arrangements. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Southminster Presbyterian Church 1507 Hurt Rd SW, Marietta, GA 30008 or St Mary’s Hospice House 1660 Jennings Mill Rd Bogart GA 30622.