Recent photo of GiGi
Hilda Bell Smith
  • 87 years old
  • Date of birth: Jun 30, 1925
  • Place of birth:
    Goldsboro, North Carolina, United States
  • Date of passing: Jul 1, 2012
  • Place of passing:
    San Francisco, California, United States
“...Let music fill the air and let joy be everywhere! Cheers and love to you.” A recent note to a friend, Hilda Bell Smith

This memorial website was created in the memory of our beloved Hilda Smith, 87, born on June 30, 1925 and passed away on July 1, 2012. Please feel free to leave your memories and stories. 

A visitation will be held between 6-8 pm, Tuesday, July 17th at Seymour Funeral Home in Goldsboro.  A service will be held Wednesday, July 18th at St. Paul Methodist Church at 10 am prior to burial in Willow Dale Cemetery next to her beloved husband J. Andrew Smith Jr.

Memorial Tributes
This tribute was added by ron b on 30th June 2016

"Happy Birthday Hilda!  You are invited to go with me to my niece's wedding Saturday in Galveston.  Two wonderful things!"

This tribute was added by Lisa Erickson on 30th June 2016

"Today we will enjoy a banana split to celebrate your birthday. I will think of how you always exclaimed "My Lands, that's a beauty!" when the server delivered the sundae.

I will remember your delight as you scraped the last bit of topping from the metal container with a smile. "Gracious Me."

I will remember the twinkle in your eyes as I watch your great grandchildren frolic.

You are with me always and yet I miss you so..."

This tribute was added by Candace Forest on 1st July 2015

"Funny, I was just thinking about Hilda Bell yesterday during my singing class at the SF Towers. Like so many of my wonderful friends there who have left us, I miss her very much and think of her often. She loved music and was just such a ray of sunshine. Miss you, Hilda Bell!"

This tribute was added by ron b on 30th June 2015

"Hilda, I miss you, too.  I loved visiting with you in Healdsburg, and working on projects with you and your family.  You are a calming influence on me.  You seem to have had a long view on everything.

This tribute was added by Lisa Erickson on 30th June 2015

"Today I will have a banana split to celebrate my sweet grandma's, aka GiGi's, birthday. It is hard to believe that tomorrow marks 3 years since she left this life. I think of her every single day, most often with a smile on my face, but this morning brought tears streaming down my cheeks.

What I wouldn't give to hear her laugh... To see her eyes twinkle as she played with the kids...the lilt in her voice when she said, "I love you, honey."

She was sweeter than sugar. Stronger than iron. And smart as a whip. But most of all she was delightful.

I am grateful to have her love in my heart and her words of wisdom in my mind. Thank you, Hilda Bell Smith!"

This tribute was added by Martha Greenough on 30th June 2015

"Happy Birthday Hilda Bell---I think of you often and know you are at peace and miss you each Wednesday as I attend CCC luncheons and meetings. Your bright smile is with me and bless you for the family legacy you have created and left behind. Hugs, Martha"

This tribute was added by Candace Forest on 1st July 2014

"I was working up a new song for my San Francisco Towers class, Let's Misbehave by Cole Porter. It made me think of Hilda Bell because it was precisely the kind of music she really loved to hear me play. Yes, I miss her. She may be gone but she is certainly not forgotten...."

This tribute was added by ron b on 30th June 2014

"Hilda, when you are traveling over Albuquerque, please stop by.  I went to a real southern memorial for one of my ancestors on Saturday, and it was wonderful.  Later, we had iced tea.  I thought you could tell me what it meant when they laid roses down at the end of the ceremony.  I miss hearing your stories, and your calm view of the world."

This tribute was added by lisa erickson on 30th June 2014

"I think about, you, GiGi almost every single day.  Most often when I'm very happy, very upset, or find myself having a quiet moment somewhere beautiful.  I feel so blessed we had you in our lives for so long and still frequently find myself tearing up because I miss you so much.

Thank you for filling our lives with delight and our memories with such goodness.  I love you forever."

This tribute was added by suzanna allen on 30th June 2014

"Hilda was one of the most beautiful and charming women I ever met.
She was a lady in every sence of the word and she is truly missed.
Suzanna Allen"

This tribute was added by Debra Lampen on 1st July 2013

"Dear Hilda Bell, I am so hoping you are enjoying your new life.  Perhaps you have met my parents - none the less I missed sending your Birthday Card last year, which I stiissll have and will keep with me always. I do miss your Hello Sweetie."

This tribute was added by Candace Forest on 30th June 2013

"I was just thinking about Hilda Bell the other day. I miss her every time
I am at SF Towers to teach my singing class. She was such a music lover. I'm glad she was born and I'm really sorry she's not with us

This tribute was added by ron b on 30th June 2013

"Happy Birthday Hilda!  I passed through Los Angeles shortly after my visit to San Francisco and your family, and passed by that Ladybug sculpture down the street from Union Square you happily put there."

This tribute was added by Lisa Erickson on 26th June 2013

"Not a day goes by that I do not think of you and the impact you had on my life.  Thank you for all of the gifts you have given to our friends and family.  We will be eating banana splits in your honor on your birthday!"

This tribute was added by Lisa Erickson on 13th September 2012

"I can't believe I have already lived so many moments without hearing her uniquely sweet  voice.  I have memories of GiGi sprinkled throughout my house - my favorite at the moment is a stone frog statue with a cigar and a jug of booze under it's webbed hand.  I'd really like to know the story about that one.  I know she got a kick out of it because that's the kind of person she was."

This tribute was added by Jilda Gumina on 11th July 2012

"Dear Family of Hilda, I simply adored your Mother & Grandmother!  What a lovely and gracious lady. She & I always had such fun with our similar names. One time I asked her if anyone ever told her she looked like Debbie Reynolds and with that darling twinkle in her eye, she said, "Why, yes, Dear, I have heard that more than once!" You are all in my thoughts and prayers & I will miss her so."

This tribute was added by Nancy Caton on 10th July 2012

"Hilda and I served on Calvary's Board of Deacons together, and I so enjoyed her warmth, humor, and truly Christian spirit. She was always a gracious and welcoming presence at church, never failing to take the time to speak to friends old and new, and ask after their families. Shall miss our chats between services!"

This tribute was added by Diane Bundas on 9th July 2012

"Part 2 - Wherever we were we always played cards after dinner... hours and hours of various poker games, gin-rummy, and bridge (where she was my partner).  When I think of her, I always think of how much fun it was to spend time with her and how lucky I am to have her for a grandmother.  To have her for so long was an extra pleasure.  I'll miss you Nanny."

This tribute was added by Diane Bundas on 9th July 2012

"Part 1 - Nanny was the "play with us" grandmother; ready to participate in anything us kids wanted to get into.  Some of my favorite memories are of us at the beach...  taking rides on Grandaddy's boat, catching crabs, cooking, and picking them, and swimming in the ocean."

This tribute was added by Martha Greenough on 9th July 2012

"Hilda Bell was one of my favorite CCC friends. We always greeted each other with warm hugs and smiles and we each cherished shared stories of our families. Her smile and warmth will remain in my heart forever. I am blessed to have known her."

This tribute was added by Christine Nicoles on 9th July 2012

"From the moment you met Hilda you loved her. She was one of the sweetest, loving and kindest women you could know. The day she moved to California and we all met her at the airport her excitement when she saw all of us was surpassed by our happiness that she was finally here. We will miss hearing "Hi Sweetie" and the hugs that came with it. She will be loved forever and missed terribly."

This tribute was added by lisa erickson on 9th July 2012

"(posted by Lisa on behalf of Olivier and Elen, family friends from France)  
Elen and I were so sad to learn about Hilda. We loved her, as a very "universal grand-ma", a grand-mother for all of us! I feel today that I had the great privilege to experience her sweetness, her constant care to all of us (remembering a few trips with her in France, she always had a kind word for all of us)."

This tribute was added by lisa erickson on 9th July 2012

"(posted by Lisa on behalf of Andy Hall, Hilda’s Grandson)

“This is how I’ll remember Hilda Bell Smith. Patient as Job...kind, loving, and impish fun. She bent over backwards to show love and care for everyone, and she had a way of doing pretty much everything that let us really know we were deeply meaningful to her."

This tribute was added by ron b on 7th July 2012

"Hilda was, is, gentle, funny, dignified, and alert.  She was always busy; I remember all the projects we were involved in over the years.  She made me feel good about myself, and accepted.  She had a knack for putting things in perspective.  Hilda was an intense and loving light in her kind family, who, in turn, loved her very much.  Hilda is now in the sky, and the clouds, and the sun."

This tribute was added by Greg Nelson on 7th July 2012

"Joyful soul. Those words jump out at me as I remember Hilda. What an honor to have had the opportunity to have known her. She will indeed be missed."

This tribute was added by Sandra J. Swanson on 7th July 2012

"I recall having lunch at the Metropolitan Club with a most enchanting woman. But I didn't catch her name. Half-way through lunch, Terry whispered, 'That's my mom.' Oh! So that's where Terry and Lisa caught such charm and vibrance. Yes, a great lady."

This tribute was added by Debra Lampen on 7th July 2012

"Hilda Bell was truly one of the most gracious southern ladies I have ever met.  She greeted us at the Century Club with a warm smile and always a kind word.  She was genuinly interest in ones travels, family and well being.  I will miss her."

This tribute was added by Virginia Westover-Weiner on 5th July 2012

"Such a gracious and warm person, one of the first people I met when I moved to San Francisco Towers four years ago.  She always was happy to see my little Bichon going out for his walk.She will be missed by all who knew her.
-Virginia Westover"

This tribute was added by suzanna allen on 4th July 2012

"I remember meeting the most charming and gracious lady at the opening of Urban Chateau the Friday after 9/11. My opinion never varied. She was truly a great lady and will be missed by us all."

This tribute was added by Lynn Goodman on 3rd July 2012

"Hilda was a favorite of mine at The Century Club. She always greeted me with a big, southern hello, a squeeze to my hand, and a question as to how my children were doing. She was a joy to be near, a fabulous lunch companion, and a true Southern Lady! I will miss your warm greetings, Hilda!"

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This memorial is administered by:

lisa erickson


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