Lillian's Story

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Lillian Dean (Smith) Odom passed away at 7:42 a.m. Friday, March 8, 2018. She was born on April 28, 1927, in Portland, Tenn., the only child of Berry Smith and Rosa Nell (Rippy) Smith.
She was baptized at the age of 12 years and became an active member of Parker's Chapel Baptist Church. She graduated from Union High School, Gallatin, Tenn., and received a bachelor of science degree from Tennessee State University in 1948.
Lillian married Ezell Odom of Terre Haute on July 2, 1949, and immediately joined Second Missionary Baptist Church, where she was a faithful member until her passing. Positions she held included Primary Sunday School teacher and superintendent and secretary of the Home and Foreign Missions, which she held for 60 years.
She looked forward to helping with the planting of flowers on the church grounds, and her caramel cake was always a favorite at church dinners and will be sorely missed. Lillian was a homemaker until 1960, when she went to work at Saint Anthony's Hospital as a ward secretary. After four months she was promoted to unit manager in surgery. When Saint Anthony's was sold and became Terre Haute Regional Hospital in 1975, she continued her career for a total of 31 years and 8 months. After retirement, she returned as a volunteer in the surgery waiting room and a member of Senior Friends for 10 years.
Lillian was preceded in death by her loving husband of 63 years, Ezell Odom; her parents, Berry and Rosa Nell Smith; father- and mother-in-law, Thurman and Roberta Odom; brothers- and sisters-in-law, Louis and Edna Gary and Erving and Yvonne Bennet; and great-grandson, Nicholas Towles.
Lillian is survived by her stepmother, Ann Smith; daughters, Claudia Odom, Donna Towles Hoff (Robert), and Bonita McGee; four grandchildren; 16 great-grandchildren; six great-great-grandchildren; a host of relatives and friends; and two special friends, Margie Zellers and Dorothy Franklin.
Visitation will be Friday from 5 to 8 p.m. at Second Missionary Baptist Church, 1400 Oak St., with funeral services on Saturday at 12 noon. Interment: Grandview Cemetery. Arrangements entrusted to Dixon Memorial Chapel & Cremation Service, 1910 N. Belleview Place, Indianapolis.
Published on March 14, 2018
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