Alma Hobbins Smith, 91, of Wharton, gained her angel wings on Wednesday, July 6, 2022. She passed away peacefully, surrounded by her family, while in The Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital. She was born on March 5, 1931 on a farm near Boling, to the late John Walter Hobbins and Lola Madge Highsaw Hobbins.
Alma graduated from Boling High School in 1947. After graduation, she attended Zorn Business College in Houston obtaining the skills to become an Executive Secretary. Soon thereafter, she was hired for the position of secretary to County Judge Dorman Nickels of Wharton County and often took shorthand notes for Judge Nickels during proceedings and meetings.
Alma married RT (Robert Thurston) Smith, Jr. on April 29, 1950. They were married at Iago Federated Church and were Baptist by faith. Shortly thereafter, they went to work at Texas Gulf Sulphur and moved to New Gulf. Alma worked as an Executive Secretary in the Accounting Department and he worked as a machinist in the machine shop. Alma and RT raised their four children in New Gulf with a short stint in Nederland when RT was transferred by TGS. RT preceded Alma in death on September 5, 1991.
Alma and RT enjoyed traveling and camping. One of the highlights of every summer was taking their children to the beach and to Garner State Park on camping trips. Later after the children were grown, Alma’s travels included trips to such places as San Francisco, Napa Valley, Carmel, Los Angeles, San Diego, Lake Tahoe, Las Vegas, New York City, several Hawaiian islands, and multiple cruises. Some of Alma’s hobbies included reading, gardening and caring for the lovely flowers in her yard. She also loved to dance all of her life and enjoyed many games, including dominos and cards, and got together with a group of relatives to play these games at every opportunity. Alma was a fantastic cook and held Sunday dinners for her family for many years. Her roast beef was a family favorite as well as her peach cobbler and lemon bundt cake.
After RT gained his angel wings in 1991, Alma and some lady friends started attending polka and country western dances. She met Jerry Zalesak at one of these dances, and they became lifelong friends until he passed on February 10, 2011. Alma and Jerry Z., as her children called him, enjoyed dancing to polka and country music and travelling.
In addition to her parents and her husband RT, Alma was preceded in death by her siblings, Nellie Moulton, Jewel Hobbins, Neva Anderson, Ruby Wright, Mary Burwell, J.L. Hobbins, Clifford Hobbins and Hazel Hobbins, as well as special friend Jerry Zalesak.
Alma is survived by her children, Diane Richer and husband, Gerard of Houston; Lu Ann Barbre and husband, Allen of Burr; Robert Thurston Smith, III of Wharton; and Gay Lynn Cerny and husband, Richard of El Campo; grandchildren, Nicole Alvarez and husband, Adam; Natalie Tabares and husband, Michael Cordova; Stephanie Sanchez Martinez and husband, Paul; Emily Davis and husband, Shane; and Eric Cerny and wife, Rachel; great-grandchildren, Trace Alvarez, Nadia Tabares, Adan Alvarez, Adrian Alvarez, Abigail Sanchez, Alaina Alvarez, Benjamin Cordova, Kataleya Martinez and Tate Cerny, along with numerous nieces and nephews and close family friends.
Visitation was held on Friday, July 22 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Wharton Funeral Home. The Funeral Service was on Saturday, July 23 at 10:00 a.m. at Wharton Funeral Home with Rev. Robert Hobbins, her nephew, officiating. Burial followed at Evergreen Memorial Park Cemetery in Wharton.
Serving as pallbearers were Gerard Richer, Allen Barbre, Richard Cerny, Adam Alvarez, Paul Martinez, Trace Alvarez, and Adrian Alvarez. Honorary pallbearers were Eric Cerny, Shane Davis, Michael Cordova and Adan Alvarez.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to one of the following organizations in her name:
Condolences may be left for the family at www.whartonfuneralhome.com.
Services under the direction of Wharton Funeral Home 515 E. Boling Hwy.Wharton, TX 77488. 979. 532.3410.