Patricia Anne (Lyddon) Smeltzer, 78, passed away Wednesday, June 24, 2009 in Humboldt, after a valiant battle with cancer. Funeral services will be held Saturday, June 27th at 10 a.m. at the Mason-Lindhart Funeral Home in Humboldt. Visitation will be Friday, June 26th from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Funeral Home, 612 2nd Ave South, Humboldt. Burial will be Saturday at 1:30 p.m. in the Liberty Cemetery in Liberty Township in Cherokee County, three miles north of Meriden
Trish Smeltzer was born September 19, 1930 in Stuart, Iowa to Ivan Wayne Lyddon and Bethene (Seward) Lyddon. Her birth mother died when Trish was about 2 years old, not long after the birth of Trish's sister Jane. Trish grew up knowing and loving Stella Margaret (Homerin) Lyddon, her father Ivan's second wife, as "Mom". In a few years. the Lyddon family was completed with the birth of Trish and Jane's younger brother Ivan Jr. Trish grew up in Stuart amid a host of family and friends. "Stella's Beauty Shop", as the sign read, was a hub of social activity in Stuart and a home where many family gatherings were held over the years.
Trish graduated from Stuart High School in 1948 and attended Drake University for two years where she received her elementary school teaching certification. She taught 4th grade in the Stuart Public Schools for three years before she met and married John Frank Smeltzer from Redfield on May 25, 1952 at the Congregational Church in Stuart. They were soon blessed with the birth of their first son, Johnny Frank Smeltzer, and two years later with their second son, Michael Steven Smeltzer. Trish and John lived in Des Moines, Napier, Madrid, Meriden, Cherokee, Bode and Rutland over their 57 years of married life and developed many wonderful friends.
Trish was not satisfied with the fact that she had only completed a 2 year teaching certification program so, in the mid to late 1970's thru the early 1980's, after her boys were grown, she commuted 25 miles and attended night school - first in Storm Lake and later in Fort Dodge - to complete the final two years of her four year degree in teaching through Buena Vista College (now University). Completion of her degree was a proud moment for everyone in the family, but was especially important for Trish. She always had a "can do" attitude that stayed with her to the end. She taught mathematics in both the Meriden-Cleghorn Community School and the Twin-Rivers Community School for several years.
Trish loved to cook. Her cinnamon rolls and pumpkin pies were wonderful, as was everything else she prepared. But she always said that she didn't particularly like the way her potato salad came out. She loved to read, and her bookshelves overflowed with biographies, histories, and novels. She loved to share her books with many friends and they reciprocated in kind. For 18 years, she and John helped run the Tuesday "Coffee Shop" held at the Rutland City Hall. She was active in the "Town and Country" group in Rutland for many years, and assisted in the renovation of the Rose Mill Park. Trish also loved to garden and to can or freeze the bounty that the garden produced. Tomato juice, green beans and corn were her specialties. For years, she and John maintained vegetable gardens that sometimes approached 15,000 square feet. She loved flowers, particularly perennials. At times, the garden and yard were ablaze in iris, tulips, coneflowers, asters, blazing star, clematis, peonies and hosta lily. It wasn't unusual to catch her mowing that same yard on her John Deere tractor, racing along in 3rd gear! She said ... "It's a big yard!"
Trish loved to watch and feed the wide variety of birds that frequented her many feeders. She also loved to fish, never missing a good chance to catch, receive or cook up a good mess of catfish. And most of all, she loved her family with all of her being.
Trish is survived by John, her husband of 57 years; her son John and his wife Marsha (Olson) and grandchildren David and Katie Smeltzer of Fort Collins, Colorado; son Mike and his wife Carrie (Barritt) of Cleghorn; a sister Jane McLouth (Jay) of Canton, Illinois; and brother Ivan Lyddon (Marian) of West Des Moines along with many nieces and nephews and friends. She was preceded in death by her parents.
Memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society in her name.