Cathy Mary Loebel Smith, 40

Cathy Mary Loebel Smith, 40 Cathy Mary Loebel Smith of Evansville was a strong mama bear who passed Nov. 16 at the age of 40. She vehemently protected and lovingly nurtured her children who adored her as both mother and friend. She tended her hobby farm of horses, goats, chickens, bees and cats with great pride and often extended her care to rehabilitating wild animals. Her efforts to live close to the land were rooted in her childhood home in the woods and hunting trips with her father.

Cathy was very proud of her Irish heritage. She welcomed her friends into her home and treated them no differently from the family she cherished. Punks, farmers, politicians and scholars had something in common through Cathy ó they were all proud to be a part of her circle of friends and share a cup of tea around her big kitchen table.

Cathy never did anything halfheartedly. She didnít settle for a simple vacation; Cathy and her teenage son, Ian, travelled across Vietnam together. Cathy didnít just exercise; she ran marathons and volunteered for the Ironman triathlon. She earned a Bachelor of Science in biology from the University of Wisconsin Madison while caring for her newborn baby. She will be remembered as a modern-day pioneer woman and staunch supporter of equal rights.

Cathy is survived by her husband, Richard; children, Ian, Evelyn and Cordelia; mother, Ursula Loebel; brothers, Mark (Rodney Weir) and Eric (Karen); sister, Claire; and many nephews, cousins and friends. She is preceded in death by her beloved daughters, Ciara and Olivia Smith; and father, James Frederick Loebel.

A memorial service will be held from 2-4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 28, at the Union Masonic Lodge (104 W. Main St., Evansville, WI 53536). A fund has been established in Cathyís honor for her children: Memorial of Smith Family ó UW Credit Union.