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Lifelong Alaskan Regina Catherine Smith, 50, died Aug. 18, 2007, of natural causes at Hope's Seal Point home in Anchorage. Hope Cottage attendants Alicia Webber and James Olsen were with her at the time of her death.
A visitation will be from 3 to 4 p.m. Thursday, with a service at 4 p.m. at Kehl's Forest Lawn Mortuary & Crematory, 11621 Old Seward Highway. A second service will be at the Little Flower of Jesus Church at Hooper Bay followed by burial at the Hooper Bay Cemetary. Pallbearers will be Teddy Smith, Al Smith, John David Richardson, Joseph Smith, Bob Smith and James Smith.
Regina Smith, affectionately known as "Queenie," was born Oct. 17, 1956, at Hooper Bay to Carl and Catherine Smith. She was culturally adopted to John and Mary Smith shortly after her birth.
Regina became disabled and totally incapacitated about September 1976 while she lived in Bethel, as a result of a fire. She was a full-time babysitter and a part-time student at the Kuskokwim campus of the University of Alaska at the time of the incident. Ever since then, she had to receive assisted care in a nursing home Prior to her 14-year Hope Cottage residence, she received care from Providence Extended Care when it was formerly known as Our Lady of Compassion and Care in Anchorage.
Regina enjoyed outings to Seal Point's adopted park where she especially loved to listen to children while they interacted and played. Her other favorites were to listen to Yup'ik as it was being spoken and to listen to her favorite music.
Her family wrote: "At the Seal Point residence, Regina made her roommates August Joseph, Aurora Grintz and Martina Polty fully aware that she ruled the roost. Whenever these three ladies became too noisy for her comfort, Regina "hollered" for quiet and the three would immediately become quiet. Her longtime care attendants often noticed and commented that indeed Regina ruled the pecking order in that house and that they too had better obey her.
"Regina also leaves another enduring legacy that she acquired while she was well early on in her youth. Because she was one of 10 children and had to help with household duties and chores, she became a surrogate mother to her kid sister Emma Smith of her own accord. She tended to Emma like she was her own and that kindness will never be forgotten."
Regina is survived by her biological parents, Carl and Catherine Smith; sisters, Elizabeth Tall, Barbara Smith and Caroline Tomaganuk; brothers, Teddy and Aloysius Smith of Hooper Bay; adopted sisters, Rose Richardson of Anchorage, Mary M. and Emma Smith of Hooper Bay and Charlene Smith of Fairbanks; and adopted brothers, James and Ephraim Smith of Hooper Bay.
Tonight on Your Alaska Link