Cover photo for Dolores "Dee" Louise Smiley's Obituary
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1925 Dolores "Dee" 2022

Dolores "Dee" Louise Smiley

July 16, 1925 — October 23, 2022

Columbia

Dolores "Dee" Louise Smiley (nee Kincaide), of Columbia, MO, passed away October 23, 2022 at the age of 97. Dee is survived by her children, Bunnie S. Hesington, Craig C. Hesington and his wife Mille, Kirk K. Hesington and his wife Kay, and Kelly H. Martinez and Grandchildren Carin Rook, Brady Hesington and wife Dana, Rob Hesington and wife Wendy, Scott Hesington and wife Heather, Brooke Phillips and husband Kevin, Samantha Eveland, Kathryn Baines and husband Lewis and many great grandchildren.

Dee was born on July 16, 1925 to William Garfield Kincaide and Agnes Marie “May” Kincaide (King) in Camden, New Jersey. Dee married Charles William Hesington, father of her children, and later in life married Leonard Smiley, both of whom preceded her in death. Dee was preceded in death by her father William and mother Agnes, sisters Jacqueline and Diana, and beloved son Blaine.

When the world lost Dee Smiley, it lost a true renaissance woman. She was extremely gifted and skilled in so many things we couldn't possibly name them all - and we are not just saying that because we are family - but here are a few.

Dee was an accomplished artist. She had an artist studio and taught classes in many mediums. Later in life she used her painting skills to paint pet portraits that were in high demand by pet families because Dee captured each pet's distinctive personality beautifully.

Dee studied costuming and period clothing. She used this knowledge and artistic skill to sculpt exquisitely lifelike dolls dressed in authentically accurate period clothing down to the buckle on a shoe and the lace on a petticoat.

Dee was an expert self-taught tailor starting from the days she couldn't afford expensive clothes. She would make a sketch of clothing she would see in a movie or storefront and create a pattern and recreate the clothes for herself and family members.

Dee loved houses! She was a broker and builder who flipped houses before that term was even coined. She not only decorated and staged all the homes, but also worked on much of the construction herself. This was unusual for a woman in the 1950s and 60s. She loved every minute of digging up the ground for a pool, sewing all the drapes, and dry walling a bedroom.

Dee had a head for numbers, was extremely organized, and had an impeccable work ethic. These attributes were put to good use in the many businesses she owned, such as a modeling school, an art studio, an antique and gift shops, a restaurant, and a brokerage and construction company.

Dee was a talented cook and baker who created gourmet food from her garden. She also was a skilled gardener who grew the most beautiful vegetable gardens, fruit trees, and flowers, especially her magnificent roses.

Dee was a voracious reader. Some of her favorite topics were art history, nature, natural history, geography, decorating and design books, and really anything she could get her hands on.

Dee had a mechanical engineer’s mind as well as being a great problem solver. She could repair or fix almost anything. Do it yourself was her motto. This skill saved her family enormous amounts of money on repair calls.  

Dee LIVED to travel and traveled in Europe as well as all across America in her 30-foot motorhome. She belonged to travel clubs and had many adventures along the way. She took her children and grandchildren on many of these adventures and in doing so instilled in them a love for travel and old fashioned ROAD TRIPS!!

Dee shared many of her talents with her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren and inspired them to value creativity, education, hands on experience, a strong work ethic and an adventurous spirit.

Mama, grandma, aunt and friend we love you with all of our hearts and we will miss you forever. Thank you for everything. Rest in peace, beautiful. We will see you again. XOXO

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