Cover photo for Florence A. Smith's Obituary

Florence A. Smith

August 22, 1924 — September 24, 2023

Stevensville

Florence A. Smith

Florence A. Smith, 99, of Stevensville, passed away on Sunday, September 24, 2023 at Hanson Hospice Center.

 

A funeral service will be held at 11 AM on Wednesday, September 27, 2023 at Pike Funeral and Cremation Services, The Boyd Chapel, 9191 Red Arrow Hwy, Bridgman. Friends may meet with the family from 10-11 AM on Wednesday at the funeral home, prior to the service. Entombment will be in North Shore Memory Gardens, Coloma. Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice at Home, 4025 Health Park Lane, St. Joseph, MI 49085. Online condolences accepted at www.PikeFH.com.

 

Florence was born on August 22, 1924 in South Bend, Indiana, the daughter of the late Charles and Minnie (Heritz) Roth. She had one brother, John Roth, who was one year older.

 

Her early education years were at St. Paul’s Lutheran in Stevensville and St. Matthew’s Lutheran in Benton Harbor.

 

Florence had a good memory for numbers. Her first job at a lamp shade factory paid her 40 cents an hour. Her net weekly pay was $15.84. She and a friend rode a bus to Grand Rapids and she soon realized she liked living in the city rather than on the farm. She got a job there in 1944 when she was 20.

 

Florence helped in the war effort by inspecting the stitching on parachutes and later worked on a machine making heavy plastic windshields for airplanes. We affectionately called her “Rosie”.

 

Soon after arriving in Grand Rapids, Flo met her husband Walter “Butch” Wondergem. For Butch, it was love at first sight, but Florence thought he was too old. He was 36. They eventually married and were together for 20 years before he passed away. They enjoyed traveling, especially to Niagara Falls, and dancing.

 

A few years later, a handsome dark-haired gentleman named Don Smith, caught Flo’s eye. He was a meat cutter in the same store where Flo was a checker. They were happily married for 15 years before he passed away.

 

Through her many jobs, Florence realized she had an aptitude for numbers. She was promoted to working in the business office of Superior Seafoods. She became their bookkeeper and became her boss’ right hand. He had complete trust in her and her judgment.

 

In 1988, Flo retired and moved back to the area to care for her elderly mother. She still enjoyed dancing and going to the casino. In her later years, she enjoyed playing cards, gardening and working jigsaw puzzles.

 

Survivors include cousins: LaVerne Trapp, Judy Lebsack, Nancy Akright, and Oscar Heritz; niece: Susan Sarason; and dear friend and neighbor: Linda Weigel.

 

An appropriate note about Flo, the 99-year-old referred to herself as a ‘tough old broad’.  

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Florence A. Smith, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Visitation

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

10:00 - 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Pike Funeral and Cremation Services, The Boyd Chapel

9191 Red Arrow Hwy, Bridgman, MI 49106

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Pike Funeral and Cremation Services, The Boyd Chapel

9191 Red Arrow Hwy, Bridgman, MI 49106

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Entombment

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

North Shore Memory Gardens

5027 M-63, Coloma, MI 49038

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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