Date of Birth
Date of Death
WANEDA W. SMITH, Age 84 of Batavia, formerly of Elburn, passed away peacefully at Delnor Community Hospital, Geneva, early Friday morning, August 20, 2004 after a long battle with Leukemia.She was born October 16, 1919 at the family farm near Carmi, IL the daughter of George William and Charlotte Louise (Hucker) Wagner. Waneda grew up in the Carmi community where she graduated from high school and, soon afterward, moved to Batavia, IL. The family made their home on East Wilson Street and Waneda walked to work at the Campana Corporation on Rt. 31. When Furnas Electric came to town in the mid-forties, Waneda was one of the first four women hired by the company. Leonard Smith worked at Furnas as well, and took notice of this new female employee. A sweet romance grew and on November 14, 1953 they were wed. They made their home on Prairie Street in Batavia until 1960 when they built a new home on Smith family homestead on Smith Road south of Elburn. Waneda’s life was devoted to her family. A care taker and home maker through and through, Waneda filled her days and nights doing things that said "I love you.." in a thousand beautiful ways. Her family feasted on chicken and dumplings, her famous German potato salad and melt-in-your mouth wonders from the oven. Her hands were never idle. When she wasn’t sewing, embroidering or crocheting something for someone, Waneda was writing letters and poetry to her loved ones. Every year, she wrote a new Christmas Poem – completed by July! – for each member of her family. Stanza’s were dedicated to adults and children in each family. Skillfully she wrote about their favorite things. Line upon line, her words brought smiles, laughter and tears of love. She exchanged weekly letters with her sisters throughout their lives and kept their families together with visits and reunions. No matter where they lived, the road to visit was never too long for any of them. Waneda also was an avid reader, and one of best "customers" at the Elburn Library. Following Leonard’s death in 1976. Waneda continued to make her home on the Smith homestead and took a part-time job at Gliddon’s Drug Store in Elburn. For twenty some years she her smiles and loving care were dispensed with every purchase at the store. In September of 2003, Waneda returned to Batavia to make her home at the new Heritage Woods Apartments, less than a half-mile from where she lived when she first came to the Valley. At Heritage Woods, she made many friends and especially welcomed her granddaughter, Christina and beloved great grandsons, Christopher new-born Cameron. A favorite outing included a trip to Arby’s in Batavia.Waneda was a member of the Elburn American Legion Post Auxilliary for many years. She enjoyed worship as a member of the Grace Fellowship Church, Kaneville, IL whose pastor, and dear friend, the Rev. David Haidle will officiate at services on Sunday. Waneda is survived by one son Jerry Smith, of Elburn, one granddaughter, Christina (Curtis) Bates, also of Elburnand two great grandchildren, Christopher and Cameron Bates;Two sisters:Mary Lee Sullivan of Longview, WA and Norma (Wilford) Masterson of Fairfield, ILOne brother-in-law, Ivan Downen of Batavia, ILAnd many beloved nieces and nephewsShe is preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Leonard, One sister, Lucille Downen,One brother-in-law, Carl "Sully" Sullivan,Her daughter-in-law, Palma Jean Smith, And her dear great-nephew, Dean Downen.Visitation will be held Sunday, Aug. 22, 2004 from noon until 3pm at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. Her funeral service will follow at 3pm and conclude with interment services at Blackberry Cemetery, Elburn. Register, tribute pages available at www.conleycare.com. For information, call 1-800-8-CONLEY. Memorials in her name will benefit the Dean Downen Baseball Park in Kaneville, IL. Dean was Waneda’s beloved great nephew who passed away in 1986 due to cancer. Checks may be made to the Waneda Smith Memorial and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119
VISITATION - FUNERALVisitation will be held Sunday, Aug. 22, 2004 from noon until 3pm at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. Her funeral service will follow at 3pm and conclude with interment services at Blackberry Cemetery, Elburn.
Committal services will immediately follow the funeral.