Helen Russell Smith SOUTHERN PINES, S.C. - Helen Russell Smith, 92, of Southern Pines, North Carolina, passed away on Dec. 8, 2018. She was a master beader and needlework artist and created hundreds of products often displayed and admired for their intricate work and beauty. Helen was born in Barre, Vermont, on June 13, 1926, and raised on a farm in Plainfield, Vermont. She was the daughter of Nelson A. Russell and Ada Griffith Russell. She was an excellent student and graduated from Plainfield High School in 1944. She was married in Plainfield on Nov. 3, 1945, to Willard C. "Bill" Smith after his return from the Pacific Theater where he served with the U.S. Navy. Helen and Bill were married for 70 years prior to his death in 2015 and had two children and two grandchildren. Helen enjoyed life and laughed frequently and enjoyed traveling during her retirement. She was a woman who sought out and accepted responsibility and challenges throughout her career. Bill was drafted into service by the Navy (again) during the Korean War and she raised two young children while he was away at sea. She worked as a telephone operator and in an insurance agency in Plainfield. The family moved to North Carolina in 1960 where she went to work in federal civil service at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. She advanced to more senior positions throughout her federal career and her last job was as the administrator for the postmaster in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Helen is survived by a son, Ralph Russell Smith, of Destin, Florida, and daughter, Cheryl Smith Merritt, of Sanford, North Carolina, and her two grandsons Ian Smith and David Merritt. Her two siblings, Ralph Russell and Kenneth Russell, are deceased. In accordance with their wishes, Helen will be interred in a small cemetery in Plainfield. Online condolences may be made at www.bolesfuneralhome.com. Services are entrusted to Boles Funeral Home, Southern Pines.

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