Latina Smith of Plainview, passed away Friday, August 28, 2020.
Visitation will be held at Kornerstone Funeral Home from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. Monday, August 31.
A graveside service will be held at Morton Memorial Cemetery Tuesday, September 1, at 11 a.m. in Morton.
Latina Laverne Whitwell was born on August 14, 1925, in Donley County, Texas to Thomas Ollie and Sarah Emmeline Whitwell.
The youngest of four children, Latina grew up with a love of the great outdoors and reading.
She knew the value of hard work and education; utilizing both from an early age.
A tenant farmer’s daughter, she started her educational journey with time sacrificed to pick cotton and assist in the family’s livelihood.
A testament to her parents’ dedication and her own strong spirit, she overcame the time away and persisted with her studies to rise to the top of her class. She graduated valedictorian from Quail Consolidated School in 1944.
Upon graduation, Latina lived in Dumas and worked at The Cactus Ordinance Works war plant, faithfully and passionately joining the movement to support her country’s war efforts.
While in Dumas, she lived with her sister-in-law, Marie and her two nieces, building bonds and forming a close connection to last a lifetime.
After completing her time with The Cactus Ordinance Works, Latina was employed by Southwestern Public Service in the accounting department, igniting an accounting passion which led her to pursue CPA correspondence courses.
In 1951, she married Morton J. Smith, Jr. and they bought a farm in Cochran County, which they named Dusty Acres.
Together, they worked the land hand-in-hand and pursued their dreams while raising cotton, cattle, grain and kids.
They fully enjoyed the great outdoors, farming, riding horses, and camping. The days were long and the work was challenging but they thrived as a team and started a true legacy of faith and family.
After the sudden passing of her husband, Latina went to work for the Cochran County District Clerk.
She served as a Deputy Clerk for more than 13 years assisting with land deeds, court proceedings, and elections.
Upon her retirement, Latina relocated to Plainview.
Latina pursued many interests and titles throughout her life including: farming, horseback riding, fishing, gardening, camping, hiking, 4-H adult leader, Cub Scout den mother, collecting quotes, playing with her grandchildren and sharing joy.
She was devoted to her family and cherished all the time she could spend with them.
A patriotic citizen, Latina loved America and prayed for the future of the land she loved.
Latina was a dedicated member of the Church of Christ in Morton and later the Church of Christ Ninth and Columbia of Plainview.
Her faith was the cornerstone of her life she shared with all who entered her home.
Her love of God shone through her words of wisdom, tasty food and bright smile.
To know her was to learn from the wisdom of the past shared through quotes and scriptures.
She was proceeded in death by her parents; sister, Opal Whitwell Reed; brother, Alton Orben Whitwell; brother and sister-in-law, Odell and Marie Whitwell; and her husband.
She is survived by her children: Morton J. Smith III and wife, Wilma, of Alpine, Emlea S. Chanslor of Cheyanne, Wyoming, Mary True and husband, Mark, of Plainview; and her grandchildren: Emlea L. Chanslor and husband, Nathan Lynch of Austin, Sarah Howard and husband, Carey, of Austin, Jennifer Hickam and husband, Todd, of Rio Rancho, New Mexico, Kaitlyn Miller and husband, Markus, of Emporia, Kansas, and Kristen Steph and husband, Jacob, of Justin.
She was also blessed with nine great-grandchildren: Madison Loth and husband, Brandon, of Lubbock, Ashtyn Hickam of Rio Rancho, Brice Melugin of Albuquerque, Zachary Hickam of Amarillo, Mitchell Melugin of Albuquerque, Liliana Lynch of Austin, Rileigh Miller and Markus Miller III of Emporia and Aspen Steph of Justin.
She is also survived by her nieces: Laura Aldrich and husband, Sam, of Dumas and Donna Stephenson and husband, Randy, of Pampa.