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Wilma Mary Smallwood

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Wilma Mary Smallwood Obituary
Smallwood, Wilma Mary
Wilma Mary Smallwood left this world October 25, 2015 at the beautiful age of 97, with her family at her side. Born October 19, 1918 in St. Clair, Michigan to William and Selma (Volstaedt) Fritz. Wilma enjoyed a life in St. Clair filled with a large extended family, a love of learning and a passion for books. After graduating from Michigan State University in 1942 Wilma pursued a career in interior design, worked for TWA and served in the Red Cross on the island Okinawa. Always interested in an adventure she headed west to Arizona in 1948 where she met and married her husband James Smallwood and daughters Nancy, Sarah and Martha followed. During Wilma's 25 year career with the Arizona Department of Library and Archives she earned her Master's Degree from the University of Denver and retired in 1983 as Head of Research. She enjoyed 33 years of retirement. She helped many local authors research their Arizona subjects and was thanked by being acknowledged in their publications. Always interested in everyone she met Wilma was very inquisitive; she was a lifelong Lutheran, consummate sports fan and the best Mom and Grandma ever. We will miss our matriarch, our rock, our role model and cheerleader. Wilma was preceded in death by her husband James and her daughter Martha Harrell, brother Norman Fritz and sister Mae Schmidt. She is survived by daughter Nancy (Bud) Rice, daughter Sarah (Jim) Cunningham and son-in-law Stuart Harrell. Wilma had a special relationship with each of her grandchildren, Buddy (Michelle) Rice, Alyssa (Marco) Siordian, Jimmy Cunningham, Captain Kyle Harrell and Katherine (Skylar) Mohr. She also cherished her 4 great-grandchildren Madison and Reese Siordian, Mina Rice and Roald Mohr and nephews Jim Fritz, Ed Boetcher and Bill Boetcher. Graveside services will be November 25, 2015 at Greenwood Memory Lawn Cemetery, 719 N. 27th Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona at 10 am.




Published in The Arizona Republic from Nov. 18 to Nov. 22, 2015
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