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Sheila Smith Godwin

14 novembre 192622 septembre 2021

The oldest of three children, Evelyn Sheila was born on November 14, 1926 to Eileen and Arthur Smith in Monmouth, Wales. At the time, her parents were living on the historic Kymin Hill. The small house had no running water, and since they had to retrieve it from a natural spring, some distance away, it was decided that Eileen would go to a house on Glendower Street in Monmouth to give birth. At the age of five, her parents settled in the village of Wyesham, just a short distance from Monmouth, on the other side of the River Wye. She lived a very happy life, loved school and excelled in her studies. At age 12, she won a scholarship and continued her education at Monmouth School for Girls. She was fortunate to survive two serious medical emergencies, double pneumonia as an infant, and gangrenous appendix as a teenager. She biked or walked most everywhere, as was the “norm” in those days. After high school, she landed a job at Lloyd’s Bank of London in Monmouth….a job mostly held by men. But when the men were called to War, the women had to step in. She enjoyed her time at the bank and was praised many times for a job well done. She remained in that position ‘til she was 20.

Ironically, she would later meet an American soldier named Loyd, at a local dance in Monmouth, who would change her life forever. They were married at St. James Church in Wyesham in 1947, then moved across the Atlantic to a rural farm in Johnston County. They lived with Loyd’s father and two “old maid Aunts”. Upon meeting her, one Aunt made the comment to Mother that she spoke pretty good English for a foreigner! Not a good start!

The years went by, and she adapted to Southern ways, food and the life style. She became a U.S. Citizen, learned to drive, and made a good home for her children. She enjoyed playing the piano, cooking, knitting, crocheting and crossword puzzles. She loved walking on the beach. Having lived in Wilmington, Carolina Beach and Havelock afforded her that opportunity.

After retiring from American National Insurance Company in Raleigh, she and Dad got to enjoy traveling from the East Coast to the West. They both made it back to the U.K. too, where it all began. It was the first time for Dad since World War II! There were also many visits with family and friends after retirement, and it was usually centered around a good meal with lots of memories from years gone by. Mother loved to go window shopping, didn’t matter where. She loved to look at flowers and shrubs in the local nurseries, or stopping by The Farmers Market in Raleigh. Two of her favorite places were The Dollar Tree and Hobby Lobby. Yearly excursions to The State Fair always topped her list of things to do in October. She loved the changing colors of spring and fall, especially in the mountains.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Loyd O. Godwin, her son, Derek O. Godwin, her beloved brother, A. Derek Smith, and sweet sister-in-law, Jane E. Smith. Surviving are a daughter, Susan Stallings and her husband Danny, of Vass, NC, a dear brother, Roger L, Smith in Oxford, England, a daughter-in-law, Judy Godwin of Franklinton, N.C. Included in Roger’s family are his daughters, Anna (Nick) Hunter of Oxford, their sons, James and Charlie, and Miss Lucy Smith of the home. His son, David (Bridget) Smith and their two daughters, Olivia and Imogen, live in Oxon, England. There are many others in the family to remember here, as well as in Great Britain and Australia. Mother loved them all.

Mother’s love for her homeland never waned. Places like the Kymin, Welsh Newton and Llantwit Major played major roles in her life. No matter where she lived, or what happened, she never forgot her heritage, her family, or the days of World War II that affected everyone so drastically in Great Britain.

In keeping with the love that Mother had for her homeland, I’d like to include an excerpt from “The Last Farewell” by Roger Whitaker…

“And should I return home safe to England,

I shall watch the English midst roll through the dale.

For you are beautiful, and I have loved you dearly,

More dearly than the spoken word can tell….”

There will not be a service, but please consider making a donation to Feline Friends of Moore County, P.O. Box 241, Southern Pines, N.C., 28388 or Moore Humane Society, 5355 N.C. Hwy, 22, Carthage, N.C. 28327.

Arrangements by Brown-Wynne, 300 St. Mary's Street, Raleigh.

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Sheila Smith Godwin

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