On March 5, 1923 the world was blessed as Anita Lorraine Stokes entered center stage in Riverside, Ca. She was the first daughter born to Walter Moses Stokes and Theresa Wiley Stokes. Anita was raised in a family and community with a strong heritage of Christian values. With such support Anita accepted Christ and was baptized at an early age at Second Baptist Church in Riverside, CA. As a child she was an active member in her church. She attended public schools in Riverside and later in Santa Barbara where her family re-located. While in high school she met and later married James Frederick Smith. To this union Alyce Yolanda Smith was born.
After her divorce she left her daughter, Alyce with her mother she stepped into the work force and joined the war effort in the ship yards of San Francisco. After the war had ended she returned to her first love of entertaining as a triple threat entertainer (dancer, singer & actress). She was in high demand in the San Francisco area. Later she located to Oxnard, Ca where she worked at the Colonial House Restaurant for many years. Following in her family tradition she opened her own catering business. After many years of service she returned to Santa Barbara. She continued entertaining and holding court in places like Gold’s gym at 4:00am, or her patio garden at noon, or her doctor’s office. She enriched so many lives encouraging and uplifting all she came in contact with a cheerful “groovy” and “love”. She was known to family as “Sweet Sweet Mommie Neet” and to others as “Mama Groovy”. Always sharing the best gifts she was given they yielded a 100 fold harvest in the love and faith of family and friends.
In the wee hours of the morning, On Sunday, February 15, 2020 she was promoted to the glorious production on high. There she joins her Heavenly Father and loved ones who have passed on before her. Her father; Walter Stokes, mother; Theresa Wiley Stokes Merriman, sister; Jane Stokes Thomas, granddaughter; Lisa Bridges Cunningham, grandson; Steven Bernard Stokes.
She leaves behind one daughter; Alyce Smith Cooper of San Diego, CA, Five great grandchildren; DaJuan Bridges, Atlanta, GA, Dashon Bridges, Diona Johnson-Granderson (Adrian), DeEdward Cunningham, and James Cunningham all of San Diego, CA. 15 great great grandchildren, two nieces Theresa Jayne Stokes, Riverside, CA & Stephanie Stokes, Poplar Bluff, MO, three great nieces Morgan Ross, Boca Raton, FL, Theresa Janea Thomas, Medellin, Antioquia Columbia, Madison Ross, New York, NY and a host of friends and relatives who would forever carry on her legacy and spread her love.
A very special thank you to her beloved friend and loyal care taker Delores Woodson of Santa Fe, New Mexico, and the staff of Escondido Post-Acute Rehab for their compassionate care for Sweet Sweet Mommie Neet.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Anita Lorraine Smith, please visit our floral store.