Lucile Paulson Smith of Canandaigua, N.Y., formerly of Nokomis, Fla., passed away on April 27 at the age of 94. She was predeceased by her childhood sweetheart and devoted husband of 68 years, Howard F. Smith; and by her elder son, Howard F. Smith Jr. She is survived by her children: Lucile (Rodney) Harrington of Milbridge, Michael (fiancée Carol O’Donnell) of Lewiston and Brunswick, Elizabeth (Wendell) Oppewall of Southwest Harbor and Susan (Kraig) Kummer of Pittsford, N.Y.; as well as eight grandchildren and an ever-growing host of great-grandchildren.
Lucile was born in New Britain, Conn. She graduated from Teacher’s College of Connecticut (now Central Connecticut State University). In a time when many women did not work outside the home, Lucile valued her career as an elementary school teacher. For 20 years, she taught kindergarten in a four-room school house in Vernon, Conn., which was the zenith of her career. In her words, she “loved working with those little people!
Lucile was a devoted wife who shared her husband’s passion for travel. They visited all 50 states and beyond in their Airstream and their Cessna airplane with Howard piloting and Lucile navigating. While traveling, she made a point to regularly send postcards, seashells, lava rocks, pine cones and other “treasures” from their various points of travel, which allowed her grandchildren to share in her adventures.
In addition to her husband and travel, Lucile enjoyed migrating between her homes in Maine and Florida. Warm summer days found Lucile and Howard in Maine, where lobster dinners, star gazing parties, tea at Jordan Pond House and picnics at Seawall were some of their joys. When the first frost struck, their days were spent collecting sharks’ teeth on the beaches of Venice, Fla., volunteering at their church, or enjoying a neighborhood gathering at their home in Calusa Lakes.
Lucile’s hands were rarely idle. Over the course of her life, she taught countless individuals to knit, including one of her great grandsons. She crafted thousands of beautiful and toasty mittens, sweaters, hats, scarves, socks and anything else two knitting needles could create.
Lucile generously shared her unconditional love with each treasured member of her family. She was our teacher, our cheerleader, and our confidante. In a word, she was the quintessential mother! Her spunky self will be greatly missed.
A private celebration of Lucile’s life will be held in Connecticut at the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Clark Meadows Recreation Program in Lucile’s memory. You may donate by mail at: FF Thompson Foundation, 350 Parrish St., Canandaigua, NY 14424. Please indicate the donation is for the Clark Meadows Recreation Program, or you may donate online at: http://www.thompsonhealth.com/FFThompsonFoundation/Donating. Indicate Clark Meadows Recreation Program in the “Other” section.