Nancy Yvonne Smith was a caring mother, nana, sister, and friend with a wonderful smile, a contagious laugh, and a loving and curious heart. She left this world suddenly and peacefully on March 28, 2021 at age 72.
Nancy was born to Rita and James Rice on June 9, 1948. After graduating from ODU in Engineering, she worked at NASA, Vansant & Gusler, and retired from Canon in 2011 as one of the first female Directors and one of very few women in Manufacturing Engineering and Facilities, where she has been described as a leader, a mentor, an advocate, and a friend who was valued for her insight and candidness.
Nancy was a voracious reader who often engaged in discussions and debates on books or current events, turning to volunteer work and advocacy in retirement. She surrounded her home with pottery and artwork from artisans whose stories she intentionally sought when selecting items for her collection that reflected the intersection between her strength and her feminine style and grace.
Nancy is survived by her daughter, son-in-law, granddaughter, three sisters, niece, and nephew. She is also survived by a self-created family of inspirational young women whose lives were forever shaped by a warm home, true conversation, a deck of cards, and a kitchen table where each was expected to be nothing more than exactly who they were.
Details about a celebration of life will be coming in the future. In lieu of flowers, the family requests you consider a donation to your public library or NPR