Death – Alberta May (Fryer) Smith Obituary

Death – Obituary

Alberta May (Fryer) Smith 93 of Columbia passed away peacefully on Tuesday, December 21, 2021, at Lenoir Woods where she was a resident since 2014. A celebration of her life is scheduled on Saturday, January 8, 2022 at 1:30 pm, at Memorial Baptist Church where she was a life-long member.

Alberta was born on February 2, 1928, in Randolph County, MO, youngest of four daughters of Frank Fryer and Eliza (Keith) Fryer. On July 30, 1950, she was united in marriage to Rodney Smith and they were married over sixty years, he preceded her in death in two thousand and fifteen.

She was a devoted wife, mother of seven children and an active partner with Rodney running Smith’s Tree Service which operated in the Boone County area for over 50 years. Alberta managed all the business and financial aspects of the company while running the Smith household. She exemplified the Godly wife described in Proverbs 31: 10-31. Alberta created the first city flag for Columbia when her husband then Mayor of Columbia needed a gift to present to visitors from Columbia’s sister city from Japan.

Alberta graduated from the University of Missouri in 1949 having earned her BS degree in Education. Her commitment to education ensured that all of her children would attend and graduate college. Alberta was an active member of Memorial Baptist Church for over 70 years.

She served the church by working in the nursery, preparing church dinners, teaching vacation bible school, providing food for the needy, gardening and calling on the sick in nursing homes and hospitals with Rodney. Alberta also worked countless volunteer hours at Camp Cedar Crest Baptist Church Camp in Santa Fe, Missouri. Alberta brought God’s blessings to others and leaves behind a strong and enduring example of Christian love and service.

She was an extremely talented cook and shared her table with her extended family and friends. Alberta was known for her remarkable quilting and sewing abilities. Her other gifts were gardening, china painting, reading, going for walks and other outdoor activities and playing games with her grandchildren. She led an active social life with her friends and family and neighbors at Lenoir.

Alberta is survived by her children; Lynda (Steve) Baumgartner of Rocheport; Gail (Doug) Boyea of Wildwood, MO; Dale (Tricia) Smith of Lilburn, Ga; Sharol (Desi) Nuckolls of Atoka, OK; Leslie (Phil) McKenna of Ellisville, MO; Amy (Doug) Blaha of Wardsville, MO; eighteen grandchildren; 13 great grandchildren and a host of nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; her three sisters; her husband and one daughter Carol May Smith.

In Lieu of flowers Memorial Contributions can be made to:

Memorial Baptist Church – Camp/Mission Fund: 1634 Paris Rd., Columbia MO 65201 or ALS St. Louis Chapter: 1950 Craig Rd., Ste. 200, St. Louis MO 63146.

Online condolences may be made at

Posted online on December 30, 2021

Published in Columbia Daily Tribune

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What Is An Obituary

In national newspapers an obituary (obit for short) is a news article that reports the recent death of a prominent person. Although it tends to focus on positive aspects of the subject’s life this is not always the case. According to Nigel Farndale, the Obituaries Editor of The Times: “Obits should be life affirming rather than gloomy, but they should also be opinionated, leaving the reader with a strong sense of whether the subject lived a good life or bad; whether they were right or wrong in the handling of their public affairs.”

In local newspapers, an obituary may be published for any local resident upon death. A necrology is a register or list of records of the deaths of people related to a particular organization, group or field, which may only contain the sparsest details, or small obituaries. Historical necrologies can be important sources of information.