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Eleanor G. Smalling

February 25, 1923 December 24, 2018
Eleanor G. Smalling
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Obituary for Eleanor G. Smalling

Eleanor Geraldine “Jerry” Ward Smalling, 95, went home to be with the Lord on Christmas Eve, December 24, 2018. She had resided in Paragould, AR for the past fifty-three years.
She was born February 25, 1923, in Brewer, Maine, to the late Leon and Esther Ward. She was the oldest of seven children. She was a graduate of Brewer High School.
Jerry enlisted in the U. S. Navy during World War II and was stationed at Squantum Naval Air Station in Quincy, MA While there, she met Wade Travis “Sam” Smalling from El Dorado, AR and they married on May 5, 1945, on the base while both were serving on active duty.
Upon discharge, the Smallings moved back to Arkansas and Mr. Smalling resumed his college education at Ouachita Baptist University. Upon graduation, the couple settled in Warren, AR from 1948-1965 where her husband was a coach and high school principal. In 1965, they moved to Paragould, AR where he served as high school principal until 1983. Jerry was her husband’s helpmate and as a team, she supported and assisted him in his career and in various school activities. They were married for fifty-three years until he passed away in 1998. After his death, she dedicated her time to church and community activities. For the past few years, she has resided at the Cottages of Belle Meade in the Smalling Home, named in honor of her and her late husband.
Jerry served as a substitute teacher, was an assistant manager for Sears Roebuck, and had a long career as an aide in the special education department at Elmwood School in Paragould until she retired in 1984. She was a long-time member of First Baptist Church where she taught Sunday School and Vacation Bible School, was a member of the choir and WMU, and was instrumental in all things hospitality including receptions, showers, anniversaries, meals, and special celebrations. She loved to organize, decorate, and make others happy by giving of herself through her time and talents. She loved the Lord and she was strong in her faith. She was a positive influence on many young people and was the center of the family that she loved so dearly. She was proud to be from Maine, loved her adopted state of Arkansas, and was an enthusiastic Razorback fan. She was a proud, patriotic Navy veteran and a member of the American Legion. She loved to laugh and she loved to make others laugh through her many antics and colorful stories.
During most of her years in Paragould, she was known for her decorated cakes. Any celebration or special occasion called for one of her cakes. Although she did this as a side business/hobby, she probably gave away more cakes than she ever sold. She displayed a giving spirit and took great pleasure in helping others. Through the years, she was there to support her children and grandchildren in their many activities. She was multi-talented, highly creative, loved music, singing, and crafts. She’ll be remembered for her popcorn balls, German chocolate cakes, Boston cream pies, letter writing, and her encouraging words for others.
Jerry is survived by her four sons and daughters-in-law: Dennis and Shirley Smalling of Rogers, AR, Bob and Jan Smalling of Warren, AR, Tom and Rita Smalling of Paragould, AR and John and Becky Smalling of Hot Springs, AR; nine grandchildren: Michelle (Steve) Masica, Mark (Carrie) Smalling, Brad (Renee) Smalling, Angie (Derek) Jones, Laurie (Scott) Letts, Jaime (Shannon) Freeman, Jacob (Nicki) Smalling, Clark (Kelsey) Smalling, and Bailey (Melissa) Smalling; and twenty-three great-grandchildren; her two sisters: Betty (David) Lang of Carlisle, MA and Connie (Cliff) Cox of Brunson, SC; four
sisters-in law: Sally Ward of Orrington, ME; Marnie Ward of Medway, ME; Mary Smalling of Bryan TX; and Betty Smalling of Roseville, CA. She was predeceased by her parents; a sister, Barbara Lenig of Pennsylvania; and three brothers Karl, Ken, and Ralph Ward of Maine.
Visitation will be Friday, December 28, from 11:00 – 1:00 at First Baptist Church with the service following at 1:00 PM. Rev. Tony Cherry and Rev. Paul Baumann will officiate. Heath Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements. Burial will be in Memorial Gardens Cemetery in the military section.
Pallbearers will be her grandsons and great-grandsons. A special thanks to the administration and staff of Belle Meade for their kindness and care. Memorials may be made to the First Baptist Church in Paragould; Redeemer Lutheran Church in Paragould; YMCA of Warren AR; Bradley County Veteran’s Museum.
Online tributes: www.heathfuneralhome.com


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Previous Events

Visitation

Friday

28

Dec

11:00 AM 12/28/2018 11:00:00 AM - 1:00 PM 12/28/2018 1:00:00 PM
First Baptist Church of Paragould

120 N. 3rd Street
Paragould, AR 72450

First Baptist Church of Paragould
120 N. 3rd Street Paragould 72450 AR
United States

Funeral Service

Friday

28

Dec

1:00 PM 12/28/2018 1:00:00 PM
First Baptist Church of Paragould

120 N. 3rd Street
Paragould, AR 72450

First Baptist Church of Paragould
120 N. 3rd Street Paragould 72450 AR
United States

Cemetery Details

Location

Greene County Memorial Gardens Final Resting Place

2901 Highway 135 N
Paragould, AR 72450

2901 Highway 135 N Paragould 72450 AR
United States
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