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Jo Lynn Davenport Smith

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Jo Lynn Davenport Smith, 75, passed away Friday, April 17, 2009, in Alamogordo. Jo Lynn was born June 14, 1933, in Houston to Emma and Theron Pryor Davenport and spent the majority of her childhood in Port Neches, Texas. After graduation from Port Neches High School, Jo Lynn went to Stephens College in Missouri and graduated in 1952. She began her career working at the Port Neches Chronicle newspaper after graduation.
On May 2, 1953, in Port Neches, Jo Lynn married Bill G. Daniel. Jo Lynn and Bill had two children, Steven Mark in 1954 and Debbie Lin in 1956. The family continued their newspaper career in Bloomington, Ill., and in 1958 settled in Farmington where they both worked for the Farmington Daily Times. During her time working with the Daily Times, Jo Lynn wrote the "Milestone to Madness" column, which earned her the 1969 E.H. Shaffer award for the best "personal column" by the New Mexico Press Association. In 1967, she married T.L. "Duke" Smith and remained married to the ultimate sportsman until his untimely death in 2007.
After completing her writing and commentary in the newspaper business, Jo Lynn switched careers to her love of archaeology and was instrumental in the excavation and creation of Salmon Ruins in Bloomfield. Her efforts were rewarded by the General Operating Support Grant offered by first lady Barbara Bush at a White House ceremony on May 18, 1990.
After retiring from her role as director of Salmon Ruins in 1992, Jo Lynn relocated to Alamogordo in August 2002 to be closer to her daughter Debbie. They enjoyed a wonderful relationship in her later years with her beloved silky terrier Hercules.
Jo Lynn was preceded in death by her father, T.P., in 1986; mother, Emma, in 1988; husband, Bill, in 1990; and husband, T.L Duke Smith, in 2007. She is survived by son Mark Daniel and wife, Debbie, of Hanford, Calif., and daughter Debbie Giuliano and husband, Ferdinand, of Alamogordo; five grandchildren, Justin Daniel and wife, Lynnsey, of Lemoore, Calif., Stephanie Giuliano, of Webster, Texas, Lindsay Daniel, of Hanford, Calif., and Angie and Pete Giuliano, of Alamogordo; and her mother-in-law Lois McDonald.
The entire family would like to thank the staff and personnel at Gerald Champion Regional Medical Center for their compassion and care of our mother and grandmother in her final days with us. Your thoughts and prayers will never be forgotten.
The Smith family has entrusted their loved one to the care of Alamogordo Funeral Home. Services will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 22, 2009, at Grace United Methodist Church in Alamogordo.

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Published in Alamogordo Daily News from Apr. 18 to May 4, 2009
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