Dorothy Smith, 93

Dorothy (nee Strohm) Smith passed away on Oct. 11, 2017, at Lawlis Family Hospice, in Mequon, at the age of 93 years.

Dorothy was born in Wabeno, Wis. the daughter of the late Carl Strohm and the late Anna (nee Dolney) Strohm, on July 7, 1924. The family later moved to Merrill, where Dorothy graduated as valedictorian of her high school class.

Dorothy relocated to Milwaukee, where she met the love of her life, Joseph Emmons Smith, while they were both members of the back stage crew at The Shorewood Players. They were united in marriage on Nov. 1, 1947. Together they raised five daughters in Grafton. In 1975, they welcomed a foreign exchange student from the Philippines, and from that moment on, Diana became part of the family, known as their sixth daughter.

Dorothy and Joseph were longtime members and supporters of St. Paul Lutheran Church, in Grafton, and were committed to providing their daughters with a strong religious foundation. Dorothy was also an active volunteer in the community and worked very hard to make Grafton a vibrant community. She was a founding member of the Cedarburg-Grafton Junior Woman’s Club and the Cedarburg Community Concert series. Dorothy’s keen intellect and social nature found an outlet in a lifelong interest in bridge. She went on to establish the Grafton Women’s Bridge Marathon and ran it for many years as a fundraiser for local charities.

Dorothy was a wonderful writer and worked as a reporter and photographer for the Grafton News Graphic, juggling that work seemingly effortlessly while raising her young family. In her later years, she worked for Leeson Electric and the law offices of Houseman and Feind, in Grafton. Above all, Dorothy was a loving mother who was proud of her daughters and gave her all for her family. We remember her sewing all of our clothes, cooking nutritious meals, singing us to sleep at night, putting on wonderful birthday parties, and creating many wonderful holiday memories for her family. Most of all, Dorothy will be remembered for her unfailing strength, integrity, sense of humor, and passionate approach to life.

Dorothy is survived by her beloved husband of 70 years, Joseph Smith, daughters, Connie (Joe) Barr, Kristi Kokes, Kerry Smith, Rebecca Smith (Les), Patricia Smith, and Diana (Eliott) Libert. She is further survived by 11 grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. Dorothy was preceded in death by her parents, and siblings, Mary, John, Althea and Bob.

A Celebration of Life was held on Monday, Oct. 16, 2017, noon at St. Paul Lutheran Church, in Grafton. The family received friends and relatives on Monday, at the church, from 11 a.m. until the time of service. Dorothy was laid to rest at St. Paul Lutheran Cemetery, in Grafton. In lieu of flowers, memorials to St. Paul Lutheran or to the charity of your choice are appreciated. Please visit to send online condolences to the Smith family.