Mary Magdalene Smith was born April 22, 1942 to Mary Lee Angton and Oliver “Sunny” Woods in Crockett Texas. The family moved to Chandler, Arizona in the early 1950s. Mary was educated in the Chandler School System. She attended the old Ocotillo school before integration. Mary was a graduate of Chandler High School and was one of the first African Americans to attend a Chandler High School prom.
Mary secured employment with Motorola Semi-conductor immediately after high school graduation. Education was important to Mary, so she completed her B.A. and Master’s while working at Motorola. Some of her friends called her a professional student, she was always seeking knowledge. Mary had enough credit hours to apply for a doctoral program but always said that was not her interest.
Mary United with the Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church during her youth under the leadership of Rev. E.R. James she was always active in the church. From a child up, she sang in the choir and was a member of Girls in Action. Mary was president of the Outreach Ministry for over 10 years and attended the Sr. Women ministry. . Mary was an Usher and a member of the trustee board; she was always working to help further the betterment of Mt. Olive MBC.
At the inception of South Chandler Self-Help Foundation, she was a board member and became the treasurer in later years Mary loved her church and church family, she loved Chandler, the neighborhood and the people that lived in it.
Mrs. Black Chandler and was a contender for the state title.
She sang in the Gospel Music Workshop of America and the Valley of the Sun Singers Union. Mary believed in doing what you can while you can. She will be missed.
She leaves to celebrate her life two (2) children Andre’ and Felicia(Mario), five (5) grandchildren, Shavonne, Charmaine, Adrianna, Lakeisha and Armon, her sister/cousin Sherrie and a host of other relatives and friends.