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Mary Jo Smith

Obituary for Mary Jo Smith

March 3, 1921 - April 8, 2017
Greenwood, Indiana | Age 96


Mary Jo Smith

All of the books have been returned.

Mary Jo Smith passed away April 8, 2017 at St. Francis Hospital in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Mary Jo lived a vivid life that somewhat mirrored the colorful lives of the characters in the books she enjoyed. She flew planes for the Civil Air Patrol during WWII, she was a business owner who taught dance, and she was a secretary for an Indianapolis law firm. After welcoming two girls in the early 1960s, Mary Jo became a home maker. Her famous strawberry jam is coveted by all and every year her family would nudge her to make another batch. Her daughters would go on to become very involved with the Girl Scouts and Mary Jo would serve as a troop leader and member of the Hoosier Capital Cookie Committee. She helped to establish Our Lady of the Greenwood Catholic Parish as one of its earliest members.

Mary Jo's voracious appetite for a good novel or mystery was only surpassed by her love of crossword puzzles.

"Spelling is a simple art." was her 1938 Garrett High School yearbook quote and it fit her to a T. Her spelling was another expertise that she used in one of her favorite hobbies: crossword puzzles. Despite her family's attempt to find the hardest crossword puzzle books available, Mary Jo would finish three or four puzzles a day. She often finished the local newspaper's crossword before her first cup of coffee was finished.

Travel was an important part of Mary Jo's life as well. She visited 49 of the 50 United States and traveled overseas. (Missing State: North Dakota.) She instilled the sense of wonder and want for life-experiences in her children and grandson.

Mary Jo was born March 3, 1921 in Garrett, Indiana to Raymond and Loretto (Manion) Behler. She is survived by one brother, John Behler (Mary) of Twinsburg, Ohio, a daughter, Martha Smith of Bloomington, Indiana, and a grandson, Aaron Hommell (Caroline) of Gulfport, Mississippi. Mary Jo was preceded in death by her husband, Paul Smith, and one daughter, Margaret Hommell.

Services will be held at St. Joseph Catholic Church at 11am Tuesday, April 18th, followed by a graveside service at Calvary Cemetery in Garrett, Indiana. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the White River Branch of the Johnson County Public Library.

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