Penwell Turner Funeral Home - Shelby, Ohio

Jean Smith

Betty Jean Smith died peacefully Saturday, December 18, 2021 at Lexington Court Nursing Center. Jean had been battling Parkinson’s Disease. She was 96 years old.

Jean was born in Greenville, PA and spent her early years in Sharon, PA working in her grandmother’s grocery store. While in high school, she worked as an USO hostess at the US Army camp nearby in Greenville.

Jean began playing the violin in elementary school and it was then that music became a grand and glorious part of her life. After high school, Jean attended Baldwin Wallace College to continue her musical training. While at BW, she met the love of her life, John Smith. Jean and John were married on graduation day in June 1949 in the college chapel. After graduation, the Smith’s moved to Columbus, Ohio where John began his medical studies at The Ohio State Medical College. Jean taught Music Education at Gahanna High School and continued her musical studies at OSU receiving her Master’s in Music Education in 1953.

After John’s graduation from medical school, the Smith’s relocated to John’s hometown of Shelby where their lives centered on family, traveling, music, and of course, golf! Jean was a 22 handicapper and loved playing at the Shelby Country Club where she made wonderful lifelong friends.

Jean’s interest in music continued to grow. She sang with the Mansfield Symphony Chorus and Mansfield Choral Society. Jean was the bell choir director for 20 years for the First United Methodist Church in Shelby. Jean and John had season tickets to the Cleveland Orchestra and there was not a Broadway show they did not attend. Their home on “The Boulevard” was filled with opera and orchestra music and beautiful pieces of art.

One of Jean’s crowning achievements was The Ohio State University Mansfield Branch. She was instrumental in working with the Columbus administration to bring the branch to Mansfield. She was an active member of the OSU-M Advisory Board and served on the OSU-M Citizens Council.

Jean and John loved Shelby. They rarely missed a football, basketball, or volleyball game. Jean loved reading and served on the board of the Shelby Marvin Memorial Library. She was involved with F.I.S.H. Ministries and enjoyed playing cards and supporting the Shelby Senior and Community Center. Before her Parkinson’s diagnosis, Jean could be found at the Shelby YMCA working out, practicing yoga, and, of course, whooping it up in Zumba class!

Jean was preceded in death by her parents; two brothers and a sister; her beloved husband, John; her wonderful in-laws; brother and sisters-in-laws: Ross Smith, Russell and Geraldine Adam, and Judy McClaskey; and nephews: Jim and Joe Adam.

She is survived by her children: Amy and Larry Glorioso of Mansfield, Andy and Jill Smith of Holly Springs, NC, and Adam Smith of Shelby; AFS daughter: Martine Segers of Belgium; granddaughters: Whitney Glorioso and Hayley Trittschuh of Mansfield, Evonne and Steve Stephenson of Cincinnati, and Jacqueline and Billy Webber of Longview, TX; 10 great grandchildren: Mason, Braxton, Weston, Lennon, Stella, Luke, Gemma, Noel, Rhyse, and Gwendolyn; nieces and nephews: John, Jeff, Jane, Nicole, and Dawn Adam.

Jean’s family would like to thank Dr. Marion Demers for her wonderful care of both of our parents, Primrose Assisted Living Center in Mansfield- your staff are true gems!, and Lexington Court Nursing Center for all the tremendous care you gave mom over these last 4 years.

Private burial will be held at a later date in Oakland Cemetery, Shelby.  Memorial contributions may be mailed to Marvin Memorial Library, 29 W Whitney Ave, Shelby or the Shelby Senior and Community Center, 154 N Gamble Street, Shelby.

Care for Jean and her family is being provided by the Penwell Turner Funeral Home, 168 West Main Street, Shelby. Online condolences may be left on Jean’s obituary at or by leaving a comment on her post on the funeral home’s Facebook page,

Memories & Condolence

  1. Linda Wetz LaGoy says:

    My sympathy and condolences to Jean’s family. She was such a dear friend of my mother, Eileen Wetz.

    They attended many Shelby Whippet sporting events together and had so much fun. I remember my mom telling me that on one occasion she took your Mother home only to find out she forgot her keys. My Mom tried to lift your Mom up to climb through her kitchen window. I can only imagine the site. Needless to say it didn’t work and they had to resort to more convention means.

    May you cherish the memories.

  2. Julie Ensman says:

    To Amy, Andy and Adam,
    My condolences to you all in the passing of your mom. Such great memories of a very classy lady. Such a great person! As I grew up with you all in the First United Methodist Church I was amazed at how your mom was so talented and beautiful. I worked with her as handbell director and she was so very helpful to this novice! Wow, 96 years -what a great run!
    Julie (Harshbarger) Swanger Ensman

  3. pat keen says:

    Jean was a neighbor at the condos and so gracious. She offered her basement if there were ever a tornado. My husband and I sat with them at home basketball games.

    So sorry to hear of her passing but she is joining many others in her heavenly home.

    Cherish your many great memories of her.

  4. Whitney Glorioso says:

    Love you so much Grams. You were simply the best. Rest easy with Grandpa and watch over us all.

  5. Mary Ruckman says:

    My sincere condolences. I had a lot of memories
    of Jean. She dressed as a witch and had a black kettle in front of their house on the Boulevard for Halloween.
    She was always kind to me when Amy and I were hanging out.
    I was able to talk to her at a birthday party a few years ago.
    Love…. Mary Lou Troxell Ruckman

  6. Rev. Bruce Haapalainen says:

    Until recently, Jean was a part of my Primrose Bible Study, her bright eyes and smile as well as her curiosity were wonderful additions to our group. She is now home and at peace. Her eyes are now some of the brightest stars in heaven.

  7. Ann Imhoff says:

    So sorry to hear this! She was so sweet and nice! I knew forever and would pick up documents to deliver in Willard(always want pay for gas but naturally I didn’t accept it)but that was the way she was!!

  8. Jeanette brown says:

    Rest in peace Jean. Jean and I became friends at the library she was beautiful person in looks and kindness. Im no longer at the library. So sorry but God needed her.

  9. Jeff, Dawn and Nicole Adam says:

    So very sorry to hear the passing of Jean.

    She was always so sweet to us and always welcomed us whenever we came into her home.

    Nicole has been driving her car for a few years now and always feels a connection to her and had even named the car Betty Jean and still has the J key chain to remember her.

    Jean will be missed but we know she is reunited with John.

    Prayers to the family.

  10. Amy Greene says:

    Jean was our neighbor for many years. She is truly one of the nicest persons we have ever met and we felt so blessed to live next to Jean and Dr Smith for so several years.

  11. Annie Helwig says:

    So sorry to hear this news about your grandmother, Evonne. I know you loved her and she loved you too.

  12. Deb Love says:

    Dear Amy and family
    So sorry to hear of your Mom’s passing…I got to know her when I worked at the YMCA years ago…She always had a smile on her face and was a bundle of energy !…May God’s love guide you through this difficult time and your memories help to comfort you now and in the days ahead…God bless you and your family

  13. Betty McKinney says:

    Jean was such a beautiful person. So kind, friendly, and outgoing. I fondly recall training her as one of the ‘Gray Ladies’ at Shelby Hospital. I’m very sorry for the family’s loss. From Betty by way of her granddaughter.

  14. David and Gladys Kramer says:

    Our sincere sympathy to Jean’s wonderful family. When serving as Dean of OSUM Mansfield I relied heavily on Jean’s advice and support. She wanted our students to acquire a lifelong love of learning that she and John embraced. What a great friend! We’ll miss her.

  15. Marilyn Wilkinson Hopkins says:

    Amy, Sending my sympathy and keeping you and all the family in my thoughts, now and in the days ahead.

  16. Victoria Glorioso says:

    Our condolences to Larry and Amy and all other family members. Jean always had the a warm smile and kind things to say.

    Chuck and Vicki Glorioso

  17. James & Barbara Eakins says:

    Our deepest sympathy to Jean’s family. She was a beautiful woman, not only outwardly but inwardly. We really did not know all that Jean did and are blown away by her accomplishments. Wow! She always had a smile for you and was always interested in what you were doing. We liked her so much.
    Such a classy lady. Her work on earth is done, and she has gone to her eternal reward. We celebrate her life and mourn her passing with you.

  18. Martha Fort says:

    She was such a great lady. I have many fond memories of her. I’m so sorry for your loss, Amy, Andy and Adam. My deepest sympathy.

  19. Joann Hipsher says:

    Amy and Family
    So sorry to hear about the passing of your mother. You and Whitney carry on her gift of music. Prayers for strength and may your many wonderful memories sustain through the difficult days ahead.
    Joann and James Hipsher

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