Violet “Vi” Lucille Arnold Smith, 94, Decatur, died Thursday, January 10, 2013, at Woodcrest Nursing Center.
Vi was born in Adams County on May 21, 1918, to the late Earl and Gladys (Kline) Arnold.
On June 15, 1941, she married David R. Smith in Kentland, Ind.; he died in 2006.
As a young woman, Vi was a pioneer in girls sports. During high school she was a member of the boys' teams, as there were no girls' teams at the time. She high-jumped, broad-jumped, and played basketball and softball. She graduated from Kirkland High School in 1937.
After high school, her passion for sports continued, and she played on the GE basketball and softball teams. She began bowling in the 1940s and continued into the 1980s. She could be found at the bowling alley four nights a week. She was an inaugural member of the Adams County Bowling Hall of Fame. In her golden years, she loved to watch sports on TV, primarily women’s and men’s basketball.
She was a member at St. Luke Church of rural Decatur, Boy Scouts as a Cub Scouts leader, DAV, and Women’s Auxiliary.
She will be remembered for her love of family, her flower and vegetable gardens, passion for sports, and sewing quilts for the many new babies of her church, family and friends.
Among survivors are two sons, David G. (Sharon) Smith of Sturgis, Mich., and Ronald A. (Teresa) Smith of Decatur; four grandchildren, Geoffrey (Stephanie) Smith, Kristina (Jeremiah) Randall, both of Sturgis, Mich., Christiane (Jason) Doolen of Las Vegas, Nev., and Zachary Smith of Fort Wayne; and eight great-grandchildren.
Vi was preceded in death by three younger brothers, Dwight Arnold, Carl Arnold, and Von Arnold.
Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. on Friday, January 18, at Haggard-Sefton & Hirschy Funeral Home. Pastor Michael Wertenberger will be officiating.
Burial will be in Pleasant Dale Cemetery.
Online condolences may be made at www.haggardandsefton.com.