Effie Jane Smith Evans died peacefully in her sleep in the early morning of October 30th, 2019 in Asheville, North Carolina, with her youngest daughter Sally at her side, her four loving children all with her in her final days.
Jane was born October 8, 1927 at Idlewild Farms in Patterson, Louisiana to William Bathie and Rita Marin Smith. She grew up in the hot shade of willow trees and mossy oaks, shined socially and in school, and graduated from the University of Southern Louisiana with a BS in Social Work. She married the love of her life Clifford Lee Evans from Daisetta, TX on June 23, 1949 at her parent’s home on the river. Together Cliff and Jane raised four children to have their fierce independence and love of life.
Her life was spent amassing family and friends, and everywhere she went, special people were fortunate to find a new friend in Jane as they fell for her laugh and her light and her incomparable parties—across south Louisiana, the state of Texas, and Western North Carolina. Jane was a true friend who cultivated and nourished her friendships over the years, keeping up with the letters, the visits, and the stories.
In death, she will be joining her Father W.B. Smith, Mother Rita Marin, brothers Ralph, Billy and Donald, and her dear sister Pat. Her husband Cliff preceded her in death, by 35 years. After tragically losing Cliff to lung cancer in 1985, Jane led her family unfailingly, devoted to her children and grandchildren, and the memory of her late husband. As a young widow, she started her own business, Effie’s Antiques, with the confidence of an entrepreneur who trusted her instincts and her taste and never once in her life failed to “tell it like it is.”
She’s leaving behind nieces, nephews, and extended family who knew her as Aunt Jane and Nan, who loved her wit and her cooking and the stories she would tell over a cold drink. And Jane has left behind the family her love built and held together, a family devoted to their Mama and Granny Lady, bolstered by her strength and unfailing humor: four children, eight grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. Her son James Lee Evans and daughter-in-law Julia Evans of Dripping Springs, TX, granddaughter Sarah Evans, great granddaughter Violet Markham, grandson Clifford Evans & wife Nicole Evans of Austin, Texas; daughter Sarah Nell Evans and son-in-law John West of Sherman, TX, granddaughter Carolyn Effie of McKinney, TX; daughter Mary Jane Smith of Woodlawn, VA, grandson Joseph Smith and wife Deborah, great grandsons Joaquin & Davi Maximiliano of McAllen, TX, grandson Travis Smith & wife Elizabeth, great grandson Tyler, great granddaughter Ellie Marie, great grandson Luke Daniel of Leesburg, VA, grandson William P. Smith of Longmont, CO, granddaughter Sally Jane Seck & husband Christopher, great granddaughter Juniper Jane of Crestone, CO; daughter Sally Ann Weldon & son-in law Dan Eller of Weaverville, NC, grandson Clifford Lee Weldon & wife Tracy, great granddaughter Penelope Ann of Shanghai, China.
Jane will be laid to rest by her husband, Clifford Lee Evans, in Evergreen Memorial Park Cemetery in Crockett, Texas.
A Funeral Mass will be held at St. Francis of Tejas Catholic Church in Crockett, Texas on Friday, November 15th at 11:00 a.m for her family and many friends to mourn and celebrate Jane’s beautiful life. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to St. Francis of Tejas Catholic Church, 609 N. 4th Street; Crockett, TX 75835.
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