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Welcome to the memorial page for

Barbara Jo Smith

February 21, 1936 ~ August 21, 2017 (age 81)

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August 26, 2017

1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
5050 Federal Boulevard
San Diego, CA 92102

Funeral Service
August 28, 2017

12:00 PM

BARBARA JO SMITH was born February 21, 1936, in Weldon, Arkansas.  She was the younger of two children born to loving and proud parents, Fred and Dimple Wesson. In 1941, Dimple relocated to San Diego, California in search of a better life for herself and her daughters. Barbara Jo attended Stockton Elementary, Memorial Junior High and graduated from San Diego High School with the “Class of 1952”. Afterwards, she attended nursing school and was later hired at Sharp Memorial Hospital in San Diego. She continued her education in nursing, and earned her Registered Nurse Degree at Lutheran Hospital, an affiliate of Sharp.

As a student at San Diego High School, Barbara Jo met her eventual husband of more than twenty years, James Smith. Barbara Jo was a devoted wife until the untimely passing of James in October, 1994.

Barbara, along with her mother and sister, united with Bethel Baptist Church during the mid-1940s under the late Dr. C. H. Hampton and continued under Dr. John W. Ringgold.  She served as the Nurses Ministry Leader for numerous years. 

Barbara Jo’s nursing career spans more than four decades. She was also a long-time member of the San Diego Black Nurses Association, Inc. She was truly a credit to her profession.

During her golden years of life, Barbara Jo enjoyed traveling to various cities with her sister, Irma and brother in law, Charles. Their collective travels included but were not limited to multiple family reunions in Arkansas, visits to all of the Hawaiian Islands, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas and Jamaica to name a few.  Barbara Jo, along with her sister and brother in law, were also frequent visitors to events hosted by the Retired Players Association of the National Football League.

Barbara Jo’s hobbies included being an avid bowler and watching sports as a spectator. She had quite a green thumb as she was known to tinker in her garden regularly, because of her love of flowers and plants. Barbara Jo had a huge heart when it came to her family and friends, including a daily ritual of connecting with a close circle of friends.  Barbara Jo was involved in philanthropic endeavors with her alumni associations, which awarded scholarships to high school students in the San Diego area. In addition, she awarded scholarships to SDBNA in memory of her mother, Dimple Wesson and her sister, Irma Powell. Although Barbara Jo never gave birth, she was truly blessed with a host of children whom she loved as her own, and they knew it.

On Monday, August 21, 2017, Barbara Jo was called home to glory to be with the Lord.  She leaves to cherish her memory: daughter, Diane Ferguson, (Bernard); son, Glen Smith; loving grandchildren and god-children, a host of other relatives and friends.

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