Wanda Lou Branton Smith was born on Galveston Island on August 19, 1923 at home and died on January 11, 2015. Wanda spent her last two days in her own bed positioned at the window of her high rise condo so she could have a view of the Gulf of Mexico and the island she loved. Her family was around her while a football game was on TV, playing softly in the background.
Known as “Mrs. Smitty,” she and her husband, Raymond Smith, built a small bait camp located on West Broadway called “Smitty’s.” They expanded the business to include boat storage, and at one time, also managed the Flagship Fishing Pier. Smitty’s is still in operation today having had only three owners in 60 years.
Waiting for her in heaven was her Lord along with her husband, Raymond C. Smith, Sr. and her son, Raymond C. Smith, Jr.
Wanda is survived by her older sister, Charlotte Millicent Dunn; daughter, Wanda Smith Grunwell and her husband, Mark Grunwell; daughter-in-law, Susan Smith; grandchildren, Mark Alan Smith (Denise), Michele Smith Grymes (Derrol), Branton Smith (Mika) and great grandchildren, Parker Smith, Calyn Grymes, Douglas Grymes, and Ella Grymes; nieces, Charlotte Brantley, Casey Peterson and Sarah Melcer; and nephew, Stephen Melcer; and longtime friend, Doris Krakower.
The Smith Family would like to give special thanks to the Chronic Home Dialysis Department which gave Mimi two years of additional life and the Adult Care for the Elderly (ACE) Unit at UTMB which gave her the quality of life in those two years. Thank you, Pam, Polly and Jennifer for your special calling.
“With all the gratitude in my heart, I thank my husband, Mark Grunwell, for taking care of his mother-in-law with such love and patience. Thank you for being a caregiver, a source of peace and at times, a referee. The love you showed Mimi was precious to me and I will be eternally grateful. You told Smitty that you would take care of her and you did. He is so proud of you and I know Ray is admiring your strength.”
Wanda’s family will receive visitors from 5:00 until 7:00 pm, Tuesday, January 13th, at Malloy & Son Funeral Home. A memorial service will begin at 7:00 pm.
Graveside service will be 11:00 am, Wednesday, January 14th, at Galveston Memorial Park in Hitchcock.