Laura Elizabeth Westmoreland Smith was born June 20, 1935 in Corpus Christi and quietly slipped into the arms of her Lord in the early morning hour of July 21, 2019.
She attended W. B. Ray High School and shortly after graduation married her sweetheart, Kenneth Smith, on August 28, 1953. They moved to Tyler in October of 1964 and several years later, she became the music teacher at Caldwell Playschool. She eventually became the principal of the new campus when they opened a second school on Chilton Avenue. Ken was promoted to Postmaster and they relocated to Rusk in 1975. Laura started with Citizens Bank and shortly moved over to Austin Bank where she worked for another 21 years.
She was a natural musician and was proficient on the piano and organ. Laura served as church organist at Lakeview Nazarene Church in Tyler for over 25 years as well as teaching piano and playing for 100's of weddings and funerals throughout the east Texas area. She was the accompanist for musicals at Cherokee County Theater and pianist for BMA Seminary in Jacksonville. In her later years, Laura became very involved in Golden Jubilee Senior Group at Jacksonville 1st Baptist along with the M&M Ladies Group, Quilter's Club, and Willing Workers Sunday School class. She was a member of the Jacksonville College Auxiliary and an avid supporter in the Booster Club for the Jaguars Basketball team.
Laura is predeceased by her husband Kenneth; parents, Jerry Gilbert and Jennie Mae Presley Westmoreland, an older brother Buddy, and a younger sister Virginia Westmoreland Riley.
She is survived by son, Kenneth James "Jimmy" Smith; daughter, Pamela "Blu" Monday-Daniels and husband John; granddaughters Kennesha Dawn Smith Yount and Danielle Leigh Smith Clark; and two great-grandchildren Brooklyn Elizabeth Clark and Blakely Anne Clark. She is also survived by brother, John Westmoreland and sisters, Nonie Tryon and Peggy Neal, along with numerous nieces and nephews.
A funeral service is scheduled at 2 o'clock in the afternoon Friday, July 26, 2019 at Autry Funeral Home Chapel in Jacksonville. Dr. Philip Attebery and Bro. Mark Hendrick will officiate. Visitation will begin at noon. She will be laid to rest at Still Waters Memorial Gardens in Jacksonville.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Hospice of East Texas 4111 University Blvd., Tyler, Texas 75701and her family wishes to thank every one of her friends who loved and cared for her, they all had a tremendous impact on her life and she loved them with all her heart.