Jerome (Jerry) Michael Smith

jerome (jerry) smith

October 16, 1938 ~ November 25, 2021

Born in: Sioux City, IA
Resided in: Hendersonville, NC

Jerome (Jerry) Smith, 83, passed away on November 25, 2021 at the Elizabeth House, the Four Seasons Hospice facility in Flat Rock.

Jerome grew up in Iowa and relocated to Chicago in the early 1960’s, where he received his bachelor’s degree from Roosevelt University. He then attended The University of Chicago, receiving a masters degree in social work. Jerome practiced social work in a variety of settings over the years, including supervision of children in foster care and those in need of protective services as well as many years as a school social worker in the Chicago area, including work with troubled adolescents in alternative high schools and families in private practice.

After 30 years in the mental health field, Jerome and his wife became bookstore owners in Portsmouth, NH, enjoying this change in careers for 10 years. After retiring, Jerome worked again in the alternative high school in Casco, Maine, while also having the opportunity to indulge his creative side with wood carving, folk art painting, and carpentry. Jerome and his wife moved to Hendersonville in 2008, where they have greatly enjoyed the natural beauty of the mountains and the woods surrounding them.

Jerome was known for his wit, his intellectual curiosity, his love of animals, his enjoyment of good conversation, music, good food and wine, as well as an ability to draw on his unique and creative sense of humor, even as his health failed him. Jerome was also known for his skill in relating to adolescents with difficulties and his compassion for those in need.

Jerome is survived by his wife of 49 years, Barbara; his son, Mark Smith (wife Vicki); his daughter, Angela Milstead (husband Ian), his grandchildren, Sean Milstead, Dylan Smith, Haley Smith and his sister, Mary Ellen Burns. Jerome was preceded in death by his parents, Ellen and George Smith; one sister, Terry Hassenger and one brother, Dan Smith.

A Memorial Service will be held at a later date. Memorial donations may be made in his name to Four Seasons Compassion For Life Hospice, 571 South Allen Road, Flat Rock, NC 28731.

Groce Funeral Home’s Lake Julian team is assisting the family.

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The family greatly appreciates donations made to these charities in Jerome (Jerry) Michael Smith 's name.

Four Seasons Compassion For Life

571 S. Allen Road
Flat Rock, NC 28731 28731

Memories Timeline


  1. I worked for (with) Jerry when he and Barbara owned the Little Professor Bookstore in Portsmouth, NH, for five years in the early ’90’s. They weren’t merely employers to the staff, they were truly friends, a rare flower, that. I recognized immediately that Jerry’s comic sensibility was unlike any I had encountered in real life. He was a true intellectual, a deep thinker, a terrific writer, and a man of iron convictions — and funny as hell. I often wrote down his aphorisms. Barbara remains one of the kindest people I have ever known, and they were both a great and kind support to me at a difficult time in my life. I have not seen either of them for some time, but they will always remain a warm and valuable part of my memories.

    • Dear Ken,
      I cannot tell you enough how moved I was by your comments on the obituary page. So well written,as always! You really got it right in your description of Jerry and it was thoughtful of you to mention me as well as us as a couple. Our friendship has been (and will continue to be) long-lasting in spite of time and distance. I miss him terribly but am relieved that he suffers no more. I would have written sooner but I have been dealing with a mountain of paperwork that needs to done yesterday as well as phone calls, emails, etc. with new demands every day. It’s good to keep busy I guess, but I’ve had little time to grieve except for the occasional crying jags which I welcome.
      Thanks again for what you wrote. Hope the holidays are enjoyable for you I’m glad we are keeping in touch.

  2. In our hearts, Autumn belongs to Barbara and Jerry Smith. This year the trees have been especially magnificent, a beautiful tribute.

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