Our wonderful mother, grandma and great grandma, Barbara Monson Smith Rinderknecht passed away peacefully in her home on September 10, 2023. She was born in Preston Idaho on September 30, 1925 to Alma Hyrum and Ena Peterson Monson and was the eighth of ten children.
Mother loved growing up in their large family in Preston. She shared many great stories with us about her childhood; how her parents would dance and laugh and hold hands in the kitchen when they thought all the kids were asleep; how her brothers, Rheal and Garth taught her to love dancing, how the girls slept 3 to a bed, how her mom and older sisters taught the younger ones to work hard, how they didn't have many worldly possessions but did have plenty of music, love and laughter in their home. Mom truly loved her family!
After graduating from Preston High School, she attended Idaho State University in Pocatello. She then moved to Ogden, Utah to attend Ogden Business College. During this time she worked for the CC Anderson store in the credit office.
While living in Ogden, she fell in love with Charles Smith, Jr., who was stationed at Hill Air Force Base during World War II. They were married on May 25, 1945 and were later sealed in the Logan Utah temple on July 30, 1952. Through the years they were blessed with five children. They lived in many places as Dad served in the Air Force: Panama, France and California. Mother had many fond memories of the life she had with Charles while living overseas. She loved traveling throughout Europe and meeting the wonderful friends they made in their small LDS church branch.
Shortly before their fifth child was born, Dad was killed in a car accident. Mother sold their home in Riverside, California and moved to Preston, Idaho to be closer to family. This was a difficult time in mom's life and, although alone, we never felt like we were slighted by not having a dad around. We were surrounded by her love and she worked tirelessly to provide for us; teaching us to work, love God and serve each other. Mother was very grateful for the love and support she received from her family and neighbors.
Seven years later, Barbara met and married Elmer William Rinderknecht from Providence, Utah. Barbara and Elmer built a wonderful life together. They both loved to dance and belonged to the Vallaire Dance Club, where they made many choice friends. They also enjoyed traveling when they could take time off from work, and enjoyed visiting Hawaii, Mexico and many of the states where their children were living.
Mother has always been active in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, serving in Relief Society, Primary and Sunday School, both here and abroad. Mother and Elmer loved serving a mission in the England Leeds Mission and also working as officiators in the Logan Temple.
Mother worked as a secretary at Jefferson Elementary in Preston for three years, and at Logan High for 17 years. She enjoyed working in her yard and growing beautiful begonias. She loved cooking and entertaining family and friends until her health made her slow down. She loved serving others, and no one ever left her home feeling hungry.
Her biggest blessing and joy in her life was her family, which include her children, 31 grandchildren, 66 great-grandchildren and 3 great-great grandchildren.
She is survived by her children: Carol (Mark) Gunnell, Douglas Smith, Julie (Marty) Bushman, and Nancy (Wendell) Curtis, and her grandchildren.
What a joyous reunion for mom as she returned home and was greeted by those who have gone before her, which include her parents, husbands, daughter Kathy Davis, grandsons Bryant Davis and Derick Curtis, granddaughter Tracy Halterman, granddaughter in law Hillary Bushman, grandson in law Ryan Campbell, great-granddaughter Julia Hall, and all 9 of her siblings: Norma Murray, Mada Larsen, Dale Monson, Rheal Monson, Louise Hendricks, Deane Edwards, Connie Rawlings, Garth Monson and Cleone Jones.
We extend special thanks to all the wonderful IHC Hospice nurses and aides who helped care so lovingly for our Mom during the last few years of her life.
A viewing will be held Saturday, September 23, 10-11:30 am at the White Pine Funeral Home, 753 South 100 East, Logan Utah. Funeral services will be held at noon at the same location. Interment will be in the Preston, Idaho Cemetery.
Those who would like to attend the funeral virtually may use the following link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/86893266924