A photo of Hazel Smith

Hazel Smith

August 24, 1935 - January 2, 2021

Hazel Smith, born as, Hazel Vanderhorst, was the first born of 7 to Richard and Thelma Vanderhorst on August 24, 1935 in Georgetown, SC. Hazel fell asleep in death at her home in Middletown, Delaware on January 2, 2021. In her early stages of life, Hazel and her family moved from Georgetown, SC in search of planting their roots as a family. It wasn’t until the age of 18, when Hazel realized her true journey began when arriving in the Big Apple, commonly known as New York City. Hazel found her place as she began living in Brooklyn, NY. There, she and the love of her life, John Smith lovingly known as ‘Johnny Boot’ connected and became inseparable. The two love birds pronounced their love in a public declaration on May 28, 1960. As the years went by and their love grew, they decided to raise a blended family of five children. Lewis, Anthony, Sput, Jackie and Alton, the apples of their eyes.

As time progressed, her love of being a wife and mother grew immensely. She later became a faithful servant of Jehovah, always making it a priority. Hazel dedicated her life by water baptism on March 22, 1969, marking one of the most memorable moments in her life. All who came into contact with Hazel knew her identifying mark was not only love but her strong desire to please Jehovah by means of her fine conduct. She aided several family members and friends into the truth. Taking pride in knowing she was serving her God to the best of her ability. She would walk miles engaging in street witnessing while continuously auxiliary pioneering, giving the best she could, as arthritis in her fingers started to set in, it still didn’t stop her from writing many letters during the recent campaign in November. Hazel was known for all her amazing experiences in the ministry. She had fond memories of the circuit overseer visiting her several years back.

After 44 years of living in Brooklyn, NY, Hazel and John decided to plant their last set of roots in Delaware in 1997. She truly enjoyed the change of scenery and a new pace of life. With her gracious and warm personality, she was not only able to meet new friends but maintain lasting friendships that will be cherished forever. Winning them over with her amusing sense of humor, she recently expressed her deep desire to regain her pearly white smile in the new system. She was determined to keep a smile on all those she came in contact with.

Hazel became well known for her annual trips to visit her sisters, enjoying lasting laughs and giggles while playing Spades together. We all know they were very serious spade players, there was no talking while playing. Hazel was also an avid book reader and loved doing puzzles. Although many never understood, she loved to count birds, trucks, cars and airplanes while sitting at the window or, if she was riding in a car. She also loved watching Western movies and cooking shows. Although Hazel was filled with love and compassion, she also had a no-nonsense policy. In her words, “If you do not come correct, then don’t come at all.”  She instituted a household policy of, do not look in her cooking pots, or do not come in the house without giving her a proper greeting.

Like any other parent, she did not like to see her children upset with one another. Family was everything to her especially her grandchildren. Hazel had a deep fondness of babysitting her grandchildren. She always looked for the best in people. When conflicts arouse, she made it her priority to encourage you to be the better person and resolve any conflicts amongst each other. Her strength and resilience were like no other, even in her most painful moments, she made it her goal to be strong for all who were around her. Her self-sacrificing spirit gave her enough energy to disguise her pain so that you would not have to worry about her. That strength, love, and passion will be missed.

Hazel is preceded in death by her parents, Richard and Thelma Vanderhorst; sons, Lewis Vanderhorst and Anthony Vanderhorst; and siblings Richard Vanderhorst Jr. and Emma Gilliard. She is survived by her loving husband of 60 years, John W. Smith; children, Osmund Smith (Sput), Gwendolyn (Jackie) and Lambert Brown, Jr.; son-in-law, Alton; daughter-in-law, Sandra Smith; grandchildren, Shante and Micah Chamberlain, Dianaja and Keith Nazario, Shian Smith, Deonjane Brown, Rihanna Smith and Taylor Smith; sisters, Thelma Conyers, Annabelle Vanderhorst, Eula Vanderhorst, Gloria and Andy Snipe (brother-in-law); as well as a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and close friends.

Hazel was dearly loved by all and will be sorely missed.

A memorial service for family and friends will be live streamed on Zoom via meeting ID 899-3059-9355 and password 214173.

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23 Guestbook messages for Hazel Smith

  • To the Smith family,
    Sending you my deepest condolences.
    Hazel will be truly missed she was a wonderful person . I enjoyed playing spades with her myself she was very passionate about playing a serious game. She had an infectious laugh, the joke may have not been funny but the way she laughed It would have you crying with laughter. She was a lifesaver when she babysat for me while I worked.
    She will forever be in my thoughts and heart.
    My love and sympathy to you all.💕💕💕
    Love
    Marylynn Ellis Winslow

  • Our Deepest Sympathy from my family to yours.

  • She’s was always happy.and she always a a smile on her face. even when she was upset we could never take her serious because she was still sweet and nice 3 second later and we weren’t use to seeing her upset. She would even laugh and say “y’all know I’m not playing with y’all”. She is a diamond 💎 in the rough.❤️

  • To the Smith family
    With our deepest condolences… We are sending our love and hugs to you…I will miss my PEPSI BUDDY..I ALWAYS I HAVE 1MY BAG FOR HER….LOVE YOU MY FAMILY….from The Ellis-Gates

  • Those we love do not go away.
    They walk beside us every day
    Unseen
    Unheard
    But Always Near

    This is my Aunt Hazel. Although she was far away her words of wisdom and kind tone walk with me daily. Reminding me to always be well-mannered, work hard, be respectful, and love my mother because she is the only one, I will get in this life. These tenants have walked with me and shaped me into the woman I am today, and when I forget and falter those timeless lessons come to fruition and guide me down the correct path. She was a never-ending source of no-nonsense advice that was littered with love. On one of my saddest days, I remember my Aunt Hazel getting on the phone with me and telling me, “…you are not just one thing, you can be whatever you want, so go do that and stop all that crying”!
    Well, Aunt Hazel, I am crying, but I will continue to hold you and all of your words dear and walk with them daily until we meet again on the spades table.

    You will always be loved and never forgotten.

    Your niece,

    Shari R. Vanderhorst

  • I’m so sorry for the loss of your dear mother, Aunt Hazel. I’ll always remember that big smile and grin. Cherish the memories because I know that you all have many. Sending my love from Charleston, South Carolina ❤

  • Family, my heartfelt sympathy goes out to all of you. What I’ll remember of Aunt Hazel is her laugh. I pray your memories give you great comfort.

  • Hi family I’m so sorry to hear about my aunt Hazel but we must think God because God‘s timing is always right and I say to the immediate family may God bless you, Know that God knows all things and we as believers we must know and trust God; That absent from the body is present with the Lord and we shall see her again! May God bless you may God comfort you in your time of bereavement. And we love you in Jesus, be bless👏🏽

  • This is for my sister. I talked to her about the death of our sister Emma and how hard it was for me to stop thinking and crying about her.so this is for my sisters. Side by Side Miles apart Sisters Will Always be Connected by Heart’s Love you MySisters

  • Oh, my dearest dear sister how I would miss you I can’t begin to describe but the time will come when no resident will say that I’m am sick Is.33:25. Fond are the memories my mind do recall I’ll will keep them forever and I’ll treasure them all, but if I was offered ,I’ll trade them all away, if you could in this life spend just one more day, so long my friend, so long my dear friend our long road had come to an end SO LONG my loving dear dear sisterRev21:3 ,4 Annabelle Vanderhorst, your loving sister

  • This is for my sister .I talked to my sister about the death of our sister Emma and I told her how hard it was for me to stop thinking and crying about her so this is for my sisters!Sisters Side by Side Miles apart sisters will always be Connected by their Hearts. Love you My sister..Done

  • From the walker family may God bless you all mother hazel will truly be missed she wasa good hearted person and was loved by many may she rest in peace God bless you all Leroy Walker

  • Family gathering where eating and laughing was always joined by her loving smile. Its been sometime since we had the pleasure but I most certainly she is now resting and being one with her creator…sister Smith will surly be missed. Condolences to the family.

  • Sister Smith must have been a kind and wonderful personality to be around. No doubt Jehovah loves her very much and will bring her back to life. I didn’t know her personally but I hope to meet her in the righteous new world to come.♡

  • To the family may Jehovah be with you during this sad time and may strength en you and upbuild you.

  • My deepest condolences to you all.. my thoughts & prayers go out to all the smith family.may she SIP🙏

  • Sending condolences and much love.🙏🏾❤️

  • Love you hazel an you will always be in our heart

  • So sorry my condolences in this really tough time. She was always smiling she will definitely be missed. I wish I could have seen her one more time!! Sending my love family and a virtual hug!!! Love Chanice, Rocco and Miko

  • My condolences you and your family soo sorry for your lost. Alway love

    R. Brown

  • Sorry for this major lost everyone 💔 I understand this is a hard time for everyone. But keep your heads held high and stay strong. She will be truly missed. Condolences 💐 and prayers 🙏🏽 to my friends and family.

  • Hazel will be missed, she was loved by all and I’ll never forget her laugh. I pray you guys have strength and unity together amongst these times as it makes reflect on what is important in life which is family…..

    Love Chongling family

  • To The Smith Family
    We are sending our deepest and heartfelt sympathy. It was such a pleasure to be in the same congregation with Sister Smith when she was in Brooklyn. I will always remember and admire Sister Smith’s loving spirit, determination to serve Jehovah wholeheartedly and her beautiful smile. We look forward to the time when there will be know no more death, pain, sorrow and heartbreak. And one day very soon seeing Sister Smith again with her beautiful smile.🤗

    Sending our love❤️, virtual hugs and our deepest heartfelt sympathy.
    Anita & Greg Moody