Thelma Marie Smith
Thelma Marie Smith
  • March 24, 1927 - January 24, 2018
  • North Carolina

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Thelma Marie Coston Smith, age 90, of Glenaire Retirement Community, died peacefully on the early morning of Wednesday, January 24, 2018 at Wake Medical of Cary.

Born in New Bern, NC, she was the daughter of the late David and Thelma Bullock Coston. Marie Smith was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Cary. She was preceded in death by her husband, Claude Smith and a son, Michael Smith, and a sister, Dorothy Keith.

Survivors include her brothers Tommy Coston (wife Elizabeth), and David Coston, a daughter, Angela Vess (husband David); and a son, Ronald Smith (wife Mary); grandchildren (and spouses) and great grandchildren whom she loved. She is also survived by her niece, Debra Keith, whom she helped raise. She loved all of her nieces and nephews and their spouses and children and grandchildren. Family was of utmost importance to her, and she spent many hours calling, writing notes and letters (in her own hand), and praying for her family.

As a child, Marie lived through the years following the Great Depression. During that time, she had the opportunity to live for a season in her grandmother Coston's household. Her grandmother was a public school teacher and recognized a bright, eager mind. She was an inspiration to Marie, who went on to win the National Sewing Competition in 4H, and who graduated as valedictorian of her high school class. She had the opportunity to attend college, beginning at what is now Elon University and completing her Bachelor of Science in Home Economics (emphasis in Clothing Design and Textiles) at what is now U.N.C. -Greensboro. Because of her opportunities, she made sure that her children attended college.

Marie's greatest joy was serving her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. In all areas of her life, she focused on others, supporting, writing, loving, and encouraging them in the light of her gratitude to Him. She lived an "attitude of gratitude."Her kindness, thoughtfulness, gentleness, and strength have been an inspiration for so many.

A celebration of her life will be held at 11:00 AM on Monday, January 29, 2018 at First United Methodist Church in Cary. The family will receive friends at the church one hour prior to the service. Burial will follow at Montlawn. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to First United Methodist Church of Cary, 117 South Academy Street, Cary, NC 27511, or Glenaire Retirement Community, 4000 Glenaire Circle, Cary, NC 27511.

Online condolences may be made at

Brown-Wynne Funeral Home in Cary is proudly serving the family.