Makanda - The kind and gentle soul of Anna Pauline Smith, was set free at 11:30pm, Thursday, April 14, 2016. Now free of earthly burdens she is once again in the arms of loving family she treasured and has long missed.
Anna was born August 28, 1934, in Chillicothe, Illinois, to parents Stella Carlotta (Barello) and Willis Henry Hunt. Anna’s early years were spent on her grandparents’ beautiful farm in Makanda, memories of which she treasured her entire life. Anna accredited her parents’ meeting to the F.D.R.’s “CC Camp” project, particularly the building of Giant City State Park, during which her mother, a pretty local Italian girl, met her father, a handsome “CC” boy from up north. Their union resulted in the beautiful, blonde being that was Anna.
Anna’s later childhood was spent in Royalton, Illinois, where she formed lifelong friendships, still regularly meeting with the “Girls from School” throughout her life, often going out for lunch, or later when Anna was immobile, the girls continuing to brighten her days with surprise visits.
On September 1, 1958, Anna was married to local Zeigler persistent admirer William (Bill) Nelson Smith. After finally getting a “Yes!” the couple quickly drove to Mississippi and eloped before she could change her mind. Evidently it was a good decision, the marriage lasting 40 years and producing 4 children. The majority of those years were spent in Herrin, Illinois, where Anna and Bill were the proud owners of “The Monarch”, a longtime Herrin restaurant, known for great food and good times. Established in 1971, the couple operated the place until Bill’s death in 1998, at which time the family business and Herrin tradition was continued by youngest son Joe, wife Lisa and their children.
Anna is survived by: her four much-loved children, sons Steven St.Julian and partner Bruce Appleby of Makanda; William “Bill” Nelson Smith II and Joseph Daniel (Lisa) Smith of Herrin; daughter Paula Marie (Floyd) Cade of Murphysboro; treasured sister Carol (Michael) Winters and brother David (Cathy) Bianchini of Sparta; dear cousins Virginia (Ralph) Litherland of Makanda and Norma Jo Williams of Royalton. Anna was also blessed with seven grandchildren: Mark, Heather, Steven, Zachary, Cassie, Caitlin and Kasey, who together have given her 15 great-grandchildren.
Also to be remembered are her special “daughters and son”, Amanda, Tasha and Sam, and the other wonderful Shawnee Christian Rehab Center angels who tenderly watched over Anna during the past five years of her life. Her family is forever grateful to the love and kindness they bestowed on this dear soul.
A lifelong artist, Anna will always be remembered for her many and varied creations, whether they be her beautiful hand-stitched quilts, embroidered items, refinished furniture, wood-working projects or most recently, during her last years of limited mobility, the literally thousands of inspirational bookmarks which she created for donation to local libraries.
Celebration of Anna’s life will be held on Sunday, April 17, 2016 at 2:00pm at Meredith Funeral Home in Carbondale with Reverend John Annabel officiating. Visitation will be from 12:00-2:00p.m. at the funeral home. Burial will be in Makanda Evergreen Cemetery. Immediately following the service at the cemetery a celebration of life reception will be held at Giant City Lodge. Attendees are encouraged to wear only bright colors to honor of her joyful passing.
In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred and may be made to the Makanda Evergreen Cemetery to better preserve the gravesites and memory of those long dead but not forgotten.