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Mary Ellen Graves Smith

Visitation for Mary Ellen Graves Smith willbe Tuesday, Aug. 16, from 5 until 8 p.m. at Riverwood FamilyFuneral Service. Services will be Wednesday, Aug. 17, at 10 a.m. atthe funeral home chapel with burial at Clear Branch Baptist ChurchCemetery.

    A former basketball player and valedictorian of both Meadville HighSchool and Copiah-Lincoln Junior College, Mary Ellen grew up towork at Baptist Hospital in Jackson and ran community grocerystores with her husband, Troy, in Brookhaven, before going back tocollege to fulfill a lifelong dream to teach. After receiving abachelor’s degree in Education from Whitworth College and amaster’s from the University of Southern Mississippi, she taught inboth the Loyd Star and Brookhaven School Districts. An inspiringteacher, much loved by her students, Mary Ellen completed hercareer at Mullins Elementary School at the age of 72. She was aformer pianist for Halbert Heights Baptist Church.

    After her husband’s experience with cancer, she devoted her life toexploring both accepted and alternative treatments, includingorganic alkaline diets and other therapies that today are startingto be recognized as significant treatments to the disease. Hergreatest joys were her times on the road with her husband,reading/learning/teaching, and her children and grandchildren.

    Preceding her in death were her husband, partner and the great loveof her life, Troy Smith; her parents, John and Minnie Mae Graves;and her stepson, Tommy.

    She is survived by her sister, Rosie M. Graves, of Brookhaven; hersons, John Wayne Smith and David Glynn Smith, of Wesson; herdaughter, Patricia Ellen “Tricia” Smith Hamburger and husbandRobert, of Washington, D.C.; her stepson, Melvin Smith, ofBrookhaven; her nephew Reuben Graves and his wife Shirley, ofAlexandria, La.; her sister-in-law, Etta Mae Brewer, of Brookhaven;and grandchildren, Nick, Matt, Heather, Ashley, Amy, Dean, James,Stacy and Maggie.

    To express your thoughts to the family, you may visitwww.riverwoodfamily.com and click on her name to leave acomment.