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DOREEN MARY SMOOT


1924 - 2019
DOREEN MARY SMOOT Obituary

Doreen Mary Smoot (1924-2018) passed away June 25, 2018, two weeks shy of her 94th, with her family by her bedside. She was born in Kelleher's Australian Hotel in Cowra, NSW, Australia, to Denis Kelleher and Annie (Templeton) Kelleher and loved living (for 59 years) in her home in Manhattan Beach.
In 1944, Doreen began working for the United States Army Signal Corps in Sydney and was transferred to the Brisbane, Queensland, base where she met her future husband, Capt. Arthur N. Smoot. They were married August,1945, and had a brief honeymoon at Surfer's Paradise before he returned home to the U.S. with his unit. Doreen followed by the next available ship, arriving in SF in June, 1946, with a number of other Australian war brides.
She and her husband raised two sons, John and Douglas. After completing a Naturalization Class at South Bay Adult School in 1959, Doreen became, and was proud to be, an American citizen. In 1967, she re-entered the workforce as executive secretary at TRW, retiring in 1988.
Doreen was an avid reader and always interested in decorating her home and in gardening, and would wear a hat (usually large) and gloves when she went out. A few years after her husband passed in 1991, she started writing about her early life in Australia, and the 17 short stories were self-published in 2016 as "Down Under with The Useful, Beach Inspectors, and other Stories". She enjoyed people, often laughed, sometimes "breaking into song" but may be best remembered for engaging with virtually everyone who crossed her path, having little reluctance in asking personal questions.
She is predeceased by her parents, husband, Arthur N. Smoot, sister, Hazel Johnson, and younger son, Douglas. She is survived by her son, John (Marianna), granddaughter, Kathleen Crittenden (Jed), her Australian brother-in-law, Arthur Johnson, and many friends. At her request, there was no public funeral service. She was laid to rest (with family graveside service) at Woronorra Cemetery, NSW, Australia, next to her parents.
The family gives its special thanks to Doreen's neighbors, Pat Woolley and Paul Whelan, American Martyrs Church (Tere, David, Debbie, Father Joe and Monsignor Barry), and loyal friends from her TRW days (Dolly, June, Edette and Marilyn), who provided friendship, counsel and support until the end.
Published in The Beach Reporter on July 3, 2019
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