Those who knew Sue Smiser were blessed to know a gracious and kind woman. She was talented in every way, beautiful and funny, a devoted mother, brilliant businesswoman and manager, and family matriarch who was incredibly generous and supportive.
Sue came from humble beginnings. Born in Malone, Texas, Oct. 16, 1922, she was one of nine siblings raised on the family farm. Eventually, her secretarial skills led her to a position at the Army base in Harlingen, Texas where she met and married her husband, Sam Smiser. After Sam’s military commitment, they resettled in Bakersfield, California, where they began their family trucking business and raised three daughters.
As the business expanded, they relocated in 1970 to the Pasadena area. During the trucking years, Sue and Sam would attend the CTA Trucking Convention held annually at the Hotel del Coronado. When Sue decided it was time to invest in a family beach house, it’s no surprise that she looked for a spot in Coronado. Sue purchased a home on Marina Avenue and moved to Coronado with her sister, Jean, where they became part of the local community. She volunteered at the Visitor Center, supported the Flower Show, Coronado Historical Society, the Coronado Library, and Lamb’s Players.
Family and friends were frequent guests at her home, especially the annual gathering to celebrate Thanksgiving. Her family of three daughters and their spouses had grown to seven grandchildren, their spouses, and, then to 14 great grandchildren. Each one felt the love of their “Noni” in a special way. The oldest grandchild, Steve Scheidler, penned these words:
“Today our beloved “Noni” went home to be in the presence of our Lord. In her final moment she was surrounded by love, though this was not unique as all who knew her were drawn to her and couldn’t help but fall in love. She exuded kindness and compassion to everyone she met. She was the author of a legacy of grace that I am honored to be part of. She will be sorely and painfully missed…but that pain, even though it is very real, is dwarfed by the immensity and gravity of the love she showed me and to the countless lives around her.
“Thank you Noni, for all the things you were and are, for all the things said and not said, for the example you gave, for your laugh, for your spirit, for eagerness to see and do good. We love you.”
Sue passed away June 28, 2020 at age 97 in her Coronado home, in the company of her daughters, Mary Sue Scheidler, Beckey Smiser and Sammye DeBerry, her granddaughter Colleen Warren, and her devoted sister, Jean Savage. Her ashes will be buried at a later date in the family cemetery in Hubbard, Texas, joining most of her brothers and sisters, parents, cousins, etc.
In lieu of flowers, please continue the attitude of generosity to those organizations who help to promote goodness in our society.