Loving wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend, Marguerite Phyllis Smith Crites, 78, of Philippi, departed this life peacefully Thursday, June 6, 2013, at 5 a.m. in Monongalia General Hospital, where she had been a patient since Tuesday, June 4. She had been in declining health for the past two years.
She was born Nov. 14, 1934, in Grant County, to Austin and Ada Augusta Lyon Smith as the seventh of eight children.
On June 7, 1952, she married Ralph A. Crites of Moorefield at Chanute Air Force Base in Champaign, Ill. They enjoyed 61 years of marriage and parented two daughters, Margaret A. Crites Bartlett and Joan L. Crites Propst.
Two infant children preceded her in death.
Phyllis or "Priss" leaves behind two sons-in-law, David Bartlett and Ben Propst; three grandsons, Matthew R. Crites and wife Misty, Daniel A. Propst and fiancee, Jeni Wigglesworth and Samuel B. Propst and wife, Rachel; and four great-grandchildren, Alex Shay Mitchell, Lincoln and Jordan Crites and Alan S. Propst.
She was preceded in death by three sisters, Verda, Georgiana and Kathleen; and two brothers, Orlen and Curtis.
Mrs. Crites was a 1952 graduate of Petersburg High School, Petersburg. She was employed by Broaddus Hospital as a key-punch operator, was co-owner and operator of Crites,' a family clothing business, and Home Theater Video. She retired to enjoy gardening, fishing, adventuring with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and needle work. She was a member of Philippi Chapter 41 Order of the Eastern Star and the Ladies Auxiliary of the Red Fez Patrol.
At the wishes of the deceased, her body has been donated to the West Virginia University Human Gift Registry.
In lieu of flowers, donations in memory and honor of Phyllis Crites may be made to the Philippi Volunteer Fire Department in care of John Green, Main Street, Philippi WV 26416 and/or the Heart & Hand House of Philippi, 209 S. Main St., Philippi WV 26416.
A memorial service will be conducted at Philippi United Methodist Church Saturday, June 8 at 11 a.m. The Rev. Dr. John G. Lepp will officiate. A celebration of life will immediately follow in the Fellowship Hall of Philippi United Methodist Church.