Ethel Frances (Norman) Smith

March 8, 1918 ~ June 23, 2018 (age 100)

Ethel Frances Smith, 100, of Bentonville, Arkansas and a lifelong resident of Northwest Arkansas, passed away Saturday, June 23, 2018 in Bentonville.  She was born March 8, 1918 in Spring Creek, Arkansas to Nathaniel Perry Norman and Ida Sultanna Huffmaster Norman.

She lived a remarkable life, staying active even in this last year.   Having lost her husband while her daughters were still in school, she continued to run the family farm near Mason Valley, tending the beef cattle and farming the land then moving into Bentonville when the girls were in high school.

The most important thing to Ethel was her family and her home.  She was privileged to help raise and care for her four grandsons.   She was a wonderful cook and seamstress.  She loved gardening, growing both vegetables and beautiful flowers.  She enjoyed entertaining and preparing special meals for family and friends. Education was very important to Ethel, and she saw that their two daughters achieved academically. 

She was a faithful, active worker in both Mason Valley Baptist Church and First Baptist Church in Bentonville, a true prayer warrior and scholar of the Bible.  She had a gift for teaching and working with children and taught Sunday school and Vacation Bible School for over 70 years.  Countless children came to know and love her. She was also very involved in the Women’s Mission’s Group, hosting meetings in her home until just recently.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Deward Smith; and four siblings, Ola Bequette, Wallace Norman, Lee Norman and Reba Wells.

Ethel is survived by her daughters, Dr. Rachel Gibbs and husband, George of Tulsa, OK,  Ruth Poemoceah and husband,  Marc   (M.D.) of Gravette, Ark; four grandsons, George Edward Gibbs and wife Anna (whom she loved like a granddaughter), Jonathan Gibbs, David Poemoceah, Daniel Poemoceah; and her honorary granddaughter from China, Huazhen (Jenny) Yu.

Funeral services will be at 11:00AM, Saturday, June 30, 2018 in the Chapel at First Baptist Church in Bentonville with the Reverend Kenneth Colvert officiating.  Burial will follow at Benton County Memorial Park Cemetery in Rogers.

Visitation will be from 10:00AM until service time.

Memorials may be made in memory of Ethel Smith to the Samaritans Purse, PO Box 3000, Boone, North Carolina 28607  or to the First Baptist Church “Missions Fund”  220 South Main, Bentonville, Arkansas 72712.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Stockdale-Moody Funeral Services of Rogers.  Words of comfort or memories may be shared at

Donations may be made to:

Samaritans Purse
PO Box 3000, Boone NC 28607

First Baptist Church
220 South Main, Bentonville AR 72712

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