Barbara Ann Scherb Smith of Polson passed away April 14, 2023, at Providence St. Joseph Medical Center. She was born on December 13, 1949, in Terre Haute, Indiana to Dr. Burton and Frances Scherb nee Larson. Showing an affinity for languages at an early age, she studied Latin, French, German, and Russian starting in high school and throughout her college years. Majoring in English at Indiana State University, she was admitted to the Sigma Tau Delta, an English honor society for high achievement in English language, literature, and writing.
After earning her Bachelor of Arts degree at ISU, she went on to Indiana University where she obtained a Master’s degree in English. Upon graduating she married Lynn Frederic Smith at her parent’s home on August 14, 1971, and they moved to Quantico, Virginia where Lynn attended the Basic School for Marine Corps officers. His first assignment was with the 1st Tank Battalion in Camp Pendleton, CA. After a year in California, he was assigned to the 3rd Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force, Pacific and he and Barbara moved to Okinawa, Japan. While living in Japan, the couple took advantage of military leave and were able to visit Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok, Taipei, and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia which Barbara particularly enjoyed. After the military tour was over, the couple moved to Moscow, Idaho where Lynn obtained his Master’s degree in Agricultural Economics. A new job with USDA found them in Rexburg, Idaho, while Barbara worked for the Shoshone-Bannock Tribal School teaching English in Ft. Hall, Idaho. Their next move was to Southern Illinois, where Lynn continued his job with USDA, and Barbara completed requirements for a B.S. degree in Social Work at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, IL. She soon obtained employment with the Dept. of Children and Family Services for Illinois and continued with them until 1987 when she and her husband moved to Polson, Montana. She became employed briefly in Social Services for CS&KT and worked many years for Mission Mountain Enterprises.
For the last decade she and her husband enjoyed many trips to the Oregon coast. She was an accomplished pianist, an avid reader and bibliophile. She was a lover of cats, a true ailurophile, as the many cats who graced our homes for 52 years can attest. As an advocate for animal welfare, she supported Mission Valley Animal Shelter, AniMeals in Missoula and American Humane.
Barbara was preceded in death by her parents, and is survived by her husband Lynn, numerous cousins, and several brother and sisters-in-law.
Services were held April 19, 2023.
Any contributions considered may be sent to Mission Valley Animal Shelter, Polson, Montana.