Margaret A. Smith, age 90, of Venango, PA passed away from a sudden illness on March 29, 2016. Born in El Dorado, Kansas on October 12, 1925, Margaret was a daughter of the late Daniel and Hazel Plummer Kirby. At an early age she moved with her family to Colorado so that her father could work in the silver mines and her mother could serve as a cook in the mine camps. During World War II, Margaret, the youngest daughter, and her sister moved to California where they actively contributed to the US war effort by welding ship hulls. Later, they returned to Colorado where Margaret worked at times for the May Company Department Store and Bell Telephone in Denver. Eventually, she met the love of her life at the racetrack in Littleton, Colorado. They were married in 1952 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She was a devoted and loving wife to her husband, Clinton G. “Denny” Smith and she was known as a talented and diverse student of culinary arts.

As Denny’s career appointments transferred him to various locations as is common in the seasonal horseracing world, she was always there to support him and their children. They lived at various times near racetracks from Southern California to Sioux City, South Dakota, to Amarillo, Texas to Vinton, Louisiana. At each location she became proficient at preparing local cuisine and made many valuable relationships along the way. They moved to Edinboro, PA in 1976 where Denny managed Commodore Downs for several years, and then to Hershey, Pa where Margaret worked as a secretary in the race track’s admissions department at Penn National Race Course in Grantville, PA. In retirement, they developed a house on their daughter’s farm in Venango. Everyone enjoyed the diverse offerings that came from “Mamaw’s” kitchen and throughout the years she cherished the time with her kids and grandkids, always insisting that they were well fed.

In addition to her loving husband of 63 years, who died on February 25, 2016, Margaret was preceded in death by her two sisters – Virginia Toussaint and Marion Little. Margaret is survived by two children – Clinton Jr. and his wife, Stephanie Smith of Mechanicsburg, PA and Leslie and her husband, Gene of Venango, PA; her grandchildren – Clinton III and Jackie Smith of Mechanicsburg, PA; Lyndsey and Blake Diehl of Dillsburg, PA; Steven and Allison Soltesz of Melbourne, FL; Marcie and Tim Campbell of Union City, PA; Clayton and Kami Soltesz of Philadelphia, PA; and her beloved great grandchildren -Lando, Cora, and Chase. She is also survived by a niece – Nancy Hill and her husband, Larry of Loveland, Colorado and their three boys.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, April 2, 2016 at 2:00 p.m. at the Venango United Methodist Church, Venango, PA to celebrate her life.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be made to the Venango United Methodist Church, Venango Volunteer Fire Department, or Cambridge Area Volunteer Ambulance Service.