Lillian Vernell Smith Lanier, 74, of Neches, went to be with the Lord on Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013, in Palestine. She was born on Jan. 12, 1939, at home in Lamesa, Texas to Ruth (Knight) and Elvin Joseph Taylor.
She was preceded in death by her father; her first husband of 31 years, James Davis Smith; two brothers, Hollis Raymond Taylor and Wayne David Taylor; and a sister, Wilma Faye Boyd.
She is survived by her husband, John E. Lanier of Neches; a son, Arlie Davis Smith and wife Sabrina of Oakwood; two daughters, Deborah Ruth Pate and husband James and Mary Christina Nedbalek and husband Phil of Palestine; four stepchildren, Jessie, Delbert, and Thelbert Lanier, and Debra Howell; six brothers, Harold Taylor, Robert Taylor, John Taylor, Leonard Taylor, Kenneth Farris and Jack Taylor; five sisters, Patricia Grounds, Melba Jones, Sherry Hester, Francis Clark and Barbara Travis; 11 grandchildren, Chasity, Bridget, Nikki, Chad, Daniel, Clint, Jessica, Ashlyn, Cody, Jaclyn and James Royce; 13 great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.
Lillian was the principal’s secretary at Oakwood Elementary for many years, as well as an assistant coach. She was an accomplished teacher of the arts and honored by the City of Palestine for her artistic contributions. Lillian was also an award winning photographer. She was a volunteer for the Crisis Center, Hospice, Palestine Regional Medical Center, and many more organizations. Lillian also owned and operated several daycare centers. She graduated from Nixon Business College and was a member of the First Baptist Church of Neches.
Graveside services will be held on Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013, at noon at Mt. Pisgah Cemetery in Oakwood. Services will be officiated by Pastor David Dixon of Neches and Missionary David Watson. Services are under the direction of Herrington/Land of Memory Funeral Home.
Visitation will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 8, 2013, at Herrington/Land of Memory Funeral Home.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Hospice Plus, 627 S. Palestine Street, Athens, Texas 75751.
The family would like to express their deepest gratitude to TruCare Living Center for their wonderful love and care.
Lillian Vernell Smith Lanier – adored and admired, loved by all.
View online at www.herringtonfuneral.com.