Cover photo for Sammie Smith's Obituary
Sammie Smith Profile Photo

Sammie Smith

March 20, 1947 — January 14, 2024

George West

Sammie Smith

Sammie Lea (Ward) Smith was born March 20, 1947, in San Antonio, Texas, to Alton Cecil Ward and Lela Lorene McDonald Ward. She attended grade school in Asherton and graduated from Carrizo Springs High School with the class of 1965. Sammie and her beloved horse, Snap Bob, won many awards in the rodeo arena and chased lots of cattle through the Dimmit County brush.

One of her most prized awards was being the first cowgirl to win Champion All-Around CowBOY saddle at a rodeo in Del Rio in 1962. She attended Uvalde Junior College where she was a member of the Rodeo Team. On April 13, 1968, she married her sweetheart, Charles Leonard Smith, in Carrizo Springs and they made their home in Live Oak County. She was known for her dedication as a devoted wife, mother, friend, Memaw and cattle woman.

Sammie enjoyed the outdoors. She loved fishing on the banks of the Nueces River with family and friends. She was also quite the marksman, shooting two white tailed deer with a single shot on two different occasions. It was not uncommon to find her on the lawn mower, watering potted plants, or out in the pasture on the Polaris.

Sammie took great pride in her sewing and crafting skills. Her daughters wore her western creations to horse shows. You can guarantee the shirt, felt hat and saddle blanket all matched. She also sewed for a few of her close friends. Her talents in the kitchen, cooking and baking, are where she shined the brightest. From her pan of enchiladas to her chocolate cake, or trying out a new recipe from her collection of cookbooks, her recipes have been enjoyed by many. Everyone knew that when her favorite soap opera was on not to disturb her. Often as soon as it was over, she would be on the phone with her closest friends and confidants Martha Davis and Susan Clifton.

Sammie’s younger years competing in rodeos gave her a bit of a competitive streak and instilled in her the GRIT that she has passed on to her children and grandchildren. She hauled horses and show steers hundreds of miles and put in countless hours practicing in the arena and brushing steers in the barn. She was never a big sports fan until her grandchildren came along. No matter the distance or the weather, she would be there; football games, baseball games, basketball games, volleyball games, track meets, shooting sports, goat shows, steer and heifer shows or equestrian events. Win or lose as long as you played fair and enjoyed it, she was your biggest supporter!

Sammie is preceded in death by her parents; siblings, Dorothy Jean Johnson, Cecil James Ward and Billy Alton Ward; nephews, Neal Wheeler Ward and Hollis Keith Ward; and in-laws, Leonard Clifton and Helen Ruth Bullock Smith and William Sidney and Marguerite Burwell Smith.

Her love of family was most precious. She is survived by her loving husband of 55 years, Charles Smith; her children Sandra and Wesley Hensley, Laurie and Tim Wieding, Ward and Laura Smith and LeeAnn Dye Barker; grandchildren, Allison Rae Hensley and fiancé Zachary Ryan Strempel, Ryan Wesley Hensley, Pacen Layne Wieding, Holten Lee Wieding, Kaeley Anne Smith, Hannah Aubrey Smith, Wade Barker and Kelley Rochelle Barker.

Sammie is also survived by her nieces, Linda Ann Ward McNair and Susan Alieen Johnson; her nephews, Mark Alton Ward, Charles Reginald Johnson and Sidney Marvin Smith; and many great-nieces, great-nephews, cousins and friends.

A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. Sunday, January 21, 2024, at the Oakville Cemetery followed by a celebration of Sammie’s life at the Katzfey Barn in George West.

Pallbearers will be Wade Barker, Ryan Hensley, Zach Strempel, Pacen Wieding, Holten Wieding and Luke Goebel.

Honorary pallbearers will be Allison Hensley, Kaeley Smith, Hannah Smith, Kelley Barker, Martha Davis, Susan Clifton, Tommy Barker, LT Davis and Mark Ward.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to: Live Oak 4-H Shooting Sports Club or McMullen County 4-H Club, ℅ Laurie Wieding, P.O. Box 892, Three Rivers, TX 78071, or to your local 4-H Club - include “Memorial for Sammie Smith” on the memo line.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Sammie Smith, please visit our flower store.


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