It is with a sad heart that I will try to write the obituary of our mother, Minerva Smith. Mommy was born
November 28, 1912, to Joe and Ibby Coleman and she passed from this life on November 20, 2002. Both
parents have preceded her in death. She had six brothers and two sisters; Honsel, Willard, Howard, Glen and
both sisters, Vernie and Clearene, preceded her in death. Two brothers, Walter and Ward Coleman, live in Ohio.
Mommy married Walter Smith in April 10, 1929. To this union twelve children were born, Ernie Hartsock of
Norton, Virginia, Avery Smith of Hagarhill, Kentucky, Ellen Roberts of Indian Creek, Kentucky, Walter Smith Jr. of
Inkster, Michigan, Betty Kay Estepp of Dorton, Kentucky and Judi Gerhard of Wayne, Michigan who survive. She
was preceded in death by her husband, Walter Smith and six of her children, Emory, Joe E., Douglas, Curtis,
Sidney and Margie Smith. Mommy had thirty-four grandchildren and forty some great grandchildren and there are
great great grandchildren.
She was a member of the Old Regular Baptist Church since 1939. Mommy worked hard for all her life and
never complained. If there is a way to describe my mommy, I think a preacher did it in a story he told. It was
about a girl who left home when she was eighteen. She thought there was something better than what she had,
so she went to the city. In the meantime, her dad died and her mom had started to grow old. She wanted to see
her daughter again. So, she made flyers and sent them out. The daughter went into a restaurant and saw one,
she knew it was her mom and saw she was getting old. Her mom had put a simple message on them. It read,
COME HOME, I STILL LOVE YOU. The daughter went home to find the door open. When she went into the
house, she asked her mom, “Why is the door open?”. She told her daughter that the door had never been closed
since you left. That is what our mom was like. She would not go to bed until she knew that we were all in and
okay. She would call and ask if we were in for the night. She never hung up on the phone without saying, I love
When we were growing up, I remember hearing mommy asking GOD to watch over us and keep us safe.
When mommy was in the hospital she asked for her mom and her Aunt Mary Brown. If mommy could tell her
children anything, it would be, don’t weep or grieve, do not mourn. She would tell us to be good to one another
and to love each other for you are all that is left and to live for GOD and I will see you again. Sleep on mommy,
sleep in the arms of Christ. You are with the perfect Rose of Sharon and we still have thorns of life to go
through. We will miss the meals you cooked, the calls asking “are you in”, but most of all seeing your face. You
left us good memories. Good night for now, mommy, we love you and we know you are home.