LILLIAN RUTH SMITH BANNERMAN
August 1, 1940 – June 3, 2023
Born in New York City, New York to parents Edward and Ruth Banks on August 1, 1940. Lillian was the third child in a family of six children. Her sisters described her as a rebellious teenager, who loved to party, was not afraid of anything, would ride on the back of motorcycles, and wore her sister’s clothes without permission, she would have to be dragged out of parties after she missed curfew.
As a military wife she lived in Maine, Washington DC, New York, Florida, California, Tokyo, Japan and Woomera, South Australia.
She attended Riverside Community College in Riverside, California and earned her certification as a Licensed Vocational Nurse.
She began her nursing career in Southern California. She worked at Sutter Memorial Hospital, Sacramento, CA and in Woomera, South Australia. She retired from Sutter Roseville Medical Centre, Roseville, California. She was also a respite nurse and a foster parent. She enjoyed being a nurse, lending her experience and expertise on both professional and personal levels to family and friends.
She was a daughter, sister, aunt, mother, grandmother, and a great-grandmother and the best nurse. As our mother, she was devoted, strict when she had to be, allowed each of us to explore our individual interests, and supported our dreams and aspirations.
She was there for us no matter the circumstances. We each had a special type of relationship with Mom. As a grandmother, she often broke all of the parenting rules, to a point. She said, “being around kids keeps me young” and “I can spoil them if I want to, then give them back”. She enjoyed spending time with the kids, taking them on trips, staying up late into the night watching movies, eating snacks she was told not to give them, provided guidance and advice. She worried about all of us and wanted the best for each us.
She gave herself to the Lord Jesus Christ and was baptized in the Holy Spirit. Her faith in the Lord continued throughout her life. Through times of adversity, depression, failing health, and anxiety she leaned on the Lord for strength, comfort, and guidance. Every step of the way the Lord was her rock, her solace, and eventually, her escort into eternal life. Psalm 116:15; “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints.”
She was a founding member of the Sierra Leone Society of Sacramento. It has been said that “she was more African than American”. You welcomed her into the community and treated as a sister, an Auntie and sometimes as a mentor. Mom enjoyed the camaraderie, mutual trust, and friendships she made throughout the years, the food, parties, dances, clothes, traditions, events, and cherished you all dearly and thought of you as family. After retirement, she traveled to Freetown, Sierra Leone, West Africa. She felt at peace, as if she belonged, and didn’t want to come home. She also traveled to Kenya, East Africa. She once said, “When I die send me to Africa.”
Preceded in death by her beloved sons Kirk Linwood Smith (2021) and Robert Smith, Jr. (2022). Daughter-in law Annette Smith (2010).
Parents Edward and Ruth Banks
Siblings Edward Banks, Jr, and Annie Rosier.
Survived by: Siblings: Juanita McCrimmon, Dolores Faison, Thomas Banks and wife Marinna and a host of nieces and nephews.
Children: Robin Smith, Jacqueline Maddy, Mark Smith, Leo and Potee Bannerman, Nakima Smith and Ayanna Smith.
Grandchildren: Nicole and wife Cayla, Abayomi, Jamilla, Jeremiah and wife Amanda, Aaron, Markus, Isabella, Nathanael and wife Emily, Joshua, and Ashanna.
Great Grandchildren: Ayden, Taylor, Connor, Adrianna, Amira, Jackson, Markus Jr., Layla, Mecca, Neema, Octovia and Aurora.
A multitude of friends and other family members.
Lillian will be Forever In Our Hearts.