Canary Vivian Smith (Granny), 84, of Kansas City, Missouri transitioned from this life on Wednesday, February 26, 2020, at Saint Luke’s Hospice House. Canary was born August 27, 1935 in Tulsa, Oklahoma to Arthur Miller and Vivian Smith who preceded her in death. Her sons Donald Smith and Tony Bunting; two daughters Pearl Smith and Michelle Willis; grandson Steven Davis Jr.; great granddaughter Destiny Weaver; brothers Edward Smith and Fred Smith; and sisters Viola Phillis and Zwanzella Hadi also preceded her. Canary obtained her high school diploma from Lincoln High and was a proud member of the Lincoln High/R.T. Cole National Alumni Association. She continued her education by receiving a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Avila College and later a master’s degree in Science and Elementary Education and Curriculum and Instructions from Central Missouri State University. Canary loved and cherished her role as an educator of youth. Canary spent over 43 years with the Kansas City Missouri school district as an educator (teacher) at various schools including Mary Harmon Weeks, William A. Knotts and Sugar Creek elementary. These were a few of the schools that Canary left her footprint. She was a dedicated and determined teacher that brought out the best in all children. Canary went above and beyond to ensure that her students received an education that best prepared them for the next level in their educational journey. She enjoyed children, traveling, shopping, cross word puzzles and, spending time with her family and friends. Canary shared her passion for travel with her students organizing trips that provided students an opportunity to see and experience sights outside of their neighborhoods. The trips opened the minds of her students to explore and dream of the potentials of life. She found great joy in being a parent to her children but also serving as the primary mother figure for four of her grandchildren, Eric Smith, Shalonda (Smith) Graham, Alivino Brown and Antonio Smith, nurturing them throughout their childhood. They all loved being frequent travelers with Canary (Granny) on her cross-country exclusions and later incorporating the wisdom she provided in their lives. Canary was a devoted and lifetime member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. Kansas City, Missouri Alumnae Chapter. She was an active participant on DST committees whose focus centered on the youth. Working on the Cotillion committee enabled her to work closely with the young participates as a sponsor and mentor. Canary focused on preparing her mentees on life. She would not sugar coat things but gave guidance to prepare them for the rigors they would experience as they entered into adulthood. Canary established close relationships with her mentees and their parents that have lasted throughout. Canary was a loyal visitor of One in Christ Baptist Church in Jefferson City, Missouri where she visited with her family. She is survived by her two daughters Maria Smith and LaTonya Wiggins; grandchildren, great-grandchildren, great- great grandchildren; sister Martice Smith and brothers William Smith, Kenneth Smith, Larry Smith, Anthony Smith and Steven Smith; and a host of nieces, nephews, close family and friends that will truly miss her.
Services for Ms. Canary Smith will be held Saturday, March 7, 2020 at Watkins Heritage Chapel 4000 Emanuel Cleaver II Blvd. KCMO. The visitation will start at 9:00am and resume following a memory tribute by the Kansas City, Missouri Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. to begin at 10:30am. The celebration of life will begin at 11:30 AM. Ms. Canary Smith will be laid to rest at XII Gates Memorial Gardens Cemetery 9500 Bannister Rd. KCMO. The repast will be held at the Delta Athenaeum located at 900 E. Linwood Boulevard.
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