Debra "Debbie" Kay Smith was an extraordinary wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend. She left this world on March 4, 2022 while holding the hand of her loving husband of 49 years, in Hilton Head, South Carolina.
Debbie was born to the late Mattie Grider-Biddlecome & step-father Jack Biddlecome on February 1, 1953, in Fort Wayne, Indiana. After graduating from Woodburn Senior High School in 1971, she went on to attend Cincinnati Bible College. During that time she enjoyed a weekly bowling league, where she met the love of her life, Timothy Smith. They wed on June 9, 1973 and began a beautiful life together. In 1981 they made the decision to settle in Yuma, Arizona, where they adopted and raised 3 amazing children. In 2001 they moved to Wyoming, Michigan and then later to Moorhead, Minnesota to be closer family.
Debbie was a fun loving, hands-on, nurturing mom, who was always up for an impromptu cookout in the desert or a day trip to the beach. She was always very active and extremely supportive in all aspects of her childrens lives, never missing a dance recital, swim meet or soccer game. She thoroughly enjoyed being an active and devoted Beta Sigma Phi sorority sister. And being a genuine creative at heart, Debbie found a deep passion for scrapbooking and dove in head first. She attending classes, weekend crop getaways and several amazing scrapbook themed cruises that not only allowed plenty of time for scrapbooking with friends, but also fulfilled both her & Tim's love of travel. Not only did she leave us with stunning scrapbooks full of priceless memories, she also gained lifelong friendships that she sincerely cherished.
Debbie's love for children didn't start or stop with her own. She found her true calling in caring for children in many ways. First, by being a foster parent & Girl Scout leader and later with a career in education. Tim and Debbie touched & changed the lives of countless children, that they openly welcomed into their home as active members of the Arizona Foster Parent Association. Then, while in Yuma, Debbie went back to college and earned certification in early childhood education from Arizona Western College. She spent the next 25+ years as a teacher in private schools and finally as a librarian/parapro for the Grand Rapids Public School District.
As a grandmother, Debbie truly blossomed. She surrounded Mattie, Kerrington, Jayce and Scarlett with endless giggles and pure unconditional love. It goes without saying that she spoiled them all and yet she always seemed to magically have the "perfect present" right at the "perfect time". It was with great pride when she said that they were her miracle babies and "The light of her life!"
Debbie is survived by her loving husband, Timothy Harold Smith, of Moorhead MN. Her 3 beloved children, Amanda (Shawn) Myers of Saint Thomas ND, Paul Smith of Wyoming MI and Kaitlyn Smith of Moorhead MN. 4 grandchildren; 6 brother's and sister's Rick (Christy) Biddlecome, Susan (John) Osenbaugh, Michael (Rhonda) Biddlecome, Mark Van Patten, Michelle Briscan and Renee Schol. She had numerous neices and nephews, as well as countless friends and students who were lucky enough to have had their lives touched by her. She was preceded in death by both parents.
Per Debbie's wishes to be cremated, a celebration of life will be held at a later date this summer.