Linda Carol Smith (Bowen), 64, passed away Tuesday morning, May 2, 2023.
Linda was born July 15, 1958 in Americus Georgia to Mary Ann & Vernon Bowen.
Her early childhood was spent with a sister Sandy (Bowen) Gohring and an aunt Kathy Jo Morgan, who was just a few months older than Linda.
After their parents divorced, Linda and Sandy lived with their mother, grandmother, and step-granddad for a few years. They lived in Georgia, South Carolina, Oklahoma, and Kansas; moving to where the adults could find work in the restaurant business.
On March 25, 1966, Linda’s mother Mary married Philip L. Bonine. The family lived most of Linda’s childhood in rural Benton Kansas. The family lived in an old farmhouse, raised rabbits, and had vegetable gardens. Riding bikes on the country roads was a great summer activity. They went to Lake Parsons regularly for boating and skiing.
The family attended Benton Christian Church, where Linda was baptized, accepting Jesus Christ as her personal Savior.
Linda graduated from Circle High School, Towanda Kansas in 1976. She had met and fell in love with Kenneth D. (Kenny or Ken) Smith in her senior year. They were married March 5, 1977. Linda worked part-time while attending Butler College for her Associates Degree.
Linda & Ken traveled frequently in their first few years of marriage. She began working full-time. She had several cats over the years. She especially like her Siamese cats.
Linda & Ken later had 2 sons: Ryan Smith, and Kevin Smith. She loved spending time with her kids. She supported them by reading to them, serving as a Boy Scout leader, serving with their Bible Bowl team trips and competitions, and in many many other ways.
Travel with family members included many continental U.S. zoos, aquariums, and science centers. She liked going to Hard Rock Cafés and Joe’s Crab Shack restaurants on these trips.
Game time was a regular family activity – board games, card games, Scrabble, you name it. She was usually the one who read all the instructions for everyone, and made sure the rules were followed. She also attended many Christian rock concerts with them.
Other earlier travels included Australia, New Zealand, and Hawaii. Later, a big trip was to southern Africa in 2005. This trip was with Sedgwick County Zoo director Mark Reed on safari. Other travels included Eastern and Western Caribbean cruises, Macchu Picchu and an Amazon River Cruise in Peru, a Panama Canal/South America cruise, an Alaskan cruise, a Mediterranean cruise, a Mexican Riviera Cruise, another trip to southern Africa, and a mission trip with Rapha House to Cambodia.
Linda worked at The Boeing Company for over 30 years. She started as a CAD (computer-aided design) drafter, then after finishing her B.S. degree in Mathematics from Wichita State University, she became a Design Engineer. Linda advanced in her career to knowledge-based software engineering, and into lead positions. She retired in 2013 after the Boeing Wichita site was closed.
Linda was a longtime member of Countryside Christian Church. She was involved in missions and youth coach activities over the years. After retiring from Boeing, Linda volunteered at Embrace (a pregnancy support center), and Fresh Hope (helping women get a fresh start in life).
Linda is survived by her husband of 46 years, Ken Smith; sons, Ryan Smith and Kevin Smith; father, Philip Bonine; and siblings, Sandy (David) Gohring and Jimmy (Theresa) Bowen.
She was preceded in death by her mother, Mary A. Bonine and father, Vernon Bowen.
Visitation: Thursday, May 4, 2023, from 4:00 to 6:00 pm at Reflection Pointe Funeral & Cremation Services, 3201 S. Webb Rd., Wichita, KS 67210.
Funeral Service: 1:00 pm, Friday, May 5, 2023 at Countryside Christian Church, 1919 S. Rock Rd., Wichita, KS 67207. Interment to follow at Benton Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Linda’s name may be made to Embrace, 1040 N. West St., Wichita, KS 67203.