Smith, Jeanne Ruth Levy, PhD
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Mar. 8, 1921 - Feb. 7, 2014
Loving Mother, beloved daughter, wife, sister, aunt and cousin, Dr. Jeanne Ruth Levy Smith passed on February 7, 2014 with her son Michael David Smith at her side. Born March 8, 1921, in Mobile, Alabama to Rose Reiss Levy and Lionel L. Levy Sr. Jeanne was preceded in death by her parents, her sister, Marjorie in childhood, her dear husband, Albert P. Smith in 2003 and her brother, Lionel L. Levy Jr. January 2014.
Jeanne was raised in Mobile Alabama. An exceptional student, she earned a Bachelor's degree in Fashion Design and Textiles and a Masters in Psychology from the University of Alabama, Jeanne went on to earn a PhD in Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Smith served as a professor first at Bryn Mawr, and later at Penn State University for a total of nearly 25 years. She was greatly honored by the efforts of some of her former Penn State students who organized an endowment fund in Jeanne's name some years after her retirement from teaching in 1981, an unusual honor for someone still living.
Married in 1950 to John Werntz van Laer, they welcomed son Michael David in 1954. The couple divorced in 1956. In 1960 Jeanne married Albert P. Smith and along with their son lived in Willow Grove, Pennsylvania until 1982 when they moved to the Plymouth Harbor community in Sarasota, Florida where they actively embraced their golden years and each other. Whether traveling in the U.S. or abroad, serving on committees, enjoying her peers at a game of bridge, cocktail party, or sharing a thoughtful conversation, Jeanne was always at home. She was Plymouth Harbor's longest continuous resident, 1982-2014. At her 90th Birthday more than 100 friends and guests shared stories and fond remembrances. Jeanne passed at Plymouth Harbor in the Smith Care Health Center, where she was given exceptional care by her nurses, aides, and administrative staff. The family is grateful as well, to Jeanne's private duty aides, and for the outstanding care by her Private Doctor Dr. Petra Travnicek.
Jeanne is survived by her only son Michael David Smith, nephew, Michael Lane Levy and his wife Tonya, Cousins May Belle Loeb and her son Roger, Leon Reiss (Georga), Alan Bright (Carol), Mrs. Irving (Jane) Bright, Tamara Reiss Fulford, Jacob Reiss III, Norman Reiss, Jay Reiss Long, and many 3rd cousins.
A Memorial in Celebration of Jeanne's life will be held Monday, March 3, 2014 at Plymouth Harbor, 700 John Ringling Blvd. Sarasota Florida 34236, in The Club Room from 2:30-4:00pm.
Published in Herald Tribune from Feb. 28 to Mar. 1, 2014