Marilyn Jean Smith

Marilyn Jean Smith

Marilyn Jean Smith

Laguna Woods, Calif.

Marilyn Jean Smith, 87, of Laguna Woods, Calif., joined her husband, A. Duane Smith in heaven on July 6, 2023, after a five-year fight with cancer.

Survivors include her children, Kurt Smith and Kimberly (Smith) Feick; grandson, Cody Feick; nieces and nephews, Linda Berger, Tami Gerdeman, George Kadrmas, Tracy (Ken) Oster, Julie (Armin) Paff, Diane (Gary) Schmuecker, Steed (Erica) Smith and Dennis (Pam) Stevens; brothers-in-law, Lyle Gerdeman and George Kadrmas; sisters-in law, Joyce Schoon and Maureen Stevens; and many great-nieces and great-nephews.

Marilyn was born in Iowa, the daughter of Faye P. Stevens and Julia (Johnson) Stevens. She grew up in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She attended the University of Iowa where she met her late-husband and graduated with her teaching credentials. Duane and Marilyn married in Iowa and then moved to California. They were married for 62 years.

Marilyn taught grade school for 38 years. She spent most of her teaching years at Perry Elementary School and Grace Lutheran School, both in Huntington Beach where she made life-long friends and enjoyed time with her wonderful students whom she remembered fondly.

She loved to travel with her friends and was able to go to many exciting places. Her trip to Scandinavia was among her favorite trips. Marilyn was also passionate about nature and gardening. She taught her grandson all about the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve, took him to many parks, watched the ducks and taught him all about the different birds in the area.

In 2011, Marilyn and Duane moved to the Senior Community of Laguna Woods and joined the Lutheran Church of the Cross and attended Saddleback Church. They were active in various Bible Studies and enjoyed donating and helping local Christian charities.

She was preceded in death by her husband, A. Duane Smith, who died on May 3, 2023; her parents; sisters, Nancy Gerdeman, Patricia Kadrmas and Janet Stevens; brothers, David Stevens, James Stevens and Richard Stevens; brother-in-law, Jack Smith; and nephew, Kevin Stevens.

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