Gladys Beatrice Powell Smith, 79, passed away on Saturday, April 24, at Edgecombe Health Rehabilitation Center in Tarboro. A graveside service will be conducted at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 1, at Greater Ashley Chapel Missionary Baptist Church in the Vaughan community by the Rev. Milton L. Jones, officiating, and the Rev. Lennis C. Thorpe, Sr., eulogist. COVID-19 restrictions will be observed.

Gladys, daughter of the late Earnest D. Powell and Beulah Alston Powell, was born May 26, 1941, in Warren County. She accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and joined Odell Missionary Baptist Church in Littleton. Gladys was the musician for multiple choirs and a member of the Trustee Ministry. She enjoyed singing, playing multiple instruments and tap dancing. Gladys was educated in the Warren County public school system. 

She married Solomon “June” Smith, Jr. Gladys worked with Warren County Schools for 28 years as a child food nutritionist and bus driver for Vaughan Elementary School before retiring in June 2006.

In addition to her husband, Gladys was preceded in death by her daughter, Brenda Smith Freeman; her son, John Clay Smith; her stepsons, Ronald Bullock and Dennis Gayles; her brothers, William Alston, Willie Kearney and Earnest Powell; and two sisters, Celia P. Davis and Nancy P. Kearney.

She is survived by her daughter, Tanious Shavonn Smith of Macon; her sons, Solomon Wardell Smith of Henderson and William Stanley Smith (Paula) of Warrenton; her grandchildren, Anthony T. Freeman (Shauntish), Travis K. Freeman, Jalessa L. Freeman and Shakena L. Smith; 14 great-grandchildren; three sisters, Marvia Powell and Cornelia Powell of Baltimore, Md., and Mary L. Williams (Leo) of Sparta, N.J.; a sister-in-law, Lucy Ann Alston of Portsmouth, Va.; a brother-in-law, George Smith (Joann); two sisters-of-the-heart, Elizabeth Brown and Mell Jones; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.

A viewing will be held at Robinson Funeral Home in Littleton from 3-5 p.m. on Friday, April 30. Only five persons may enter at a time.