Valhalla Funeral Home & Valhalla Memory Gardens

698 Winchester RD NE, Huntsville, AL


Ruth Elsie Lee Smith

June 6, 1930June 27, 2020

Ruth Elsie Lee Ford Smith passed away peacefully in her sleep on June 27, 2020, three weeks after her 90th birthday. She was born on June 6, 1930 in Tarrant, AL to Ella Jane Chaffin Ford and Thomas Jesse Ford. She was preceded in death by her husband John T. (Tom) Smith in 1984. She was also preceded in death by her parents and seven siblings. Sisters (Inez and Emma) and brothers (Tasker, Daly Monroe, Glenn, Rolland and Lawrence), and by her special niece BeBe who shared her birthday.

She is survived by two daughters, Polly Smythe and Rebecca Silvaggi (Jeff), her beloved granddaughter Lea Billups and her adored great grandson Greyson Billups, and numerous nieces and nephews . Other survivors dear to her heart include Sonny Billups and Bill Smythe.

We are forever grateful to ChristyCare adult daycare and staff for the love they gave to her these last two years. Especially Christy, Dee, Dana and Stephanie. Mama loved to dance and we will never forget her doing the Camel Walk!

Special thanks to Henrietta and Willie Wooten, friends and neighbors who were always there if needed.

Ruth was a charter member of Trinity United Methodist Church and was active in the choir and theatre productions there. She was also a member of the Hallelujah Choir at First Baptist Church.

She was an artist who was active in the Ceramic Arts Guild in Huntsville in the 60's and 70's. She sewed and did beautiful paintings and won numerous awards for her artwork. She had a generous and caring spirit. Every year she would sew elaborate doll clothes and donate them to Christmas Charities. The children in the neighborhood were always welcome to the art studio in her home to do crafts, to paint or make something in ceramics that they could take home. She loved to travel and went on several senior bus tours with friends and had a grand time.

Homeless animals always found refuge at her house and she rescued numerous dogs, cats, birds, rabbits and guinea pigs over the years. Her joke telling was legendary and she was always the life of the party.

We will miss you Mama.........

There will be a Private Graveside Service for Family only due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Ruth Elsie Lee Smith

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