Gilda Smith Obituary

Gilda O. Smith
Gilda O. Smith

October 21, 1935 - August 30, 2018
Born in Buffalo, New York
Resided in Amherst, New York
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Obituary

SMITH - Gilda O. (nee Olivieri)
August 30, 2018; age 82; beloved wife of the late Raymon R. Smith; dearest daughter of the late John and Angelina (nee Ciancone) Olivieri; dear sister of Esther (late Maurice) Mongeon; loving aunt of Jill (Joseph) Lane, Maurice "Chip" (Mary) Mongeon, Lisa (late Glyn) Wood, Laura Mongeon (Rob Filippone) and great-nieces, Ciana and Linnea Wood, Alea and Emily Mongeon and a great-nephew, Maurice Mongeon. No prior visitation. Family and friends are invited Friday, September 21, 2018 at 10:30 AM to attend a Mass of Christian Burial celebrated at the University at Buffalo Newman Center, 495 Skinnersville Rd., Amherst. Interment to be held privately. Flowers are gratefully declined. If desired, memorials may be made to Camp Good Days, 6430 Transit Rd., Suite 200, Depew, NY 14043. Share condolences at www.AMIGONE.com.

Gilda Olivieri Smith - Principal, P.S. 54 (Dr. George E. Blackman, School of Excellence).

Born October 21, 1935 in Buffalo, New York to John & Angelina Olivieri. Younger sister to Esther (Mongeon) and the late John Jr. After a long courtship she married the late Raymon R. Smith in 1983, who had served in the U.S. Navy during WWII.

Gilda O. Smith attended Grade School at P.S. 74, Kensington High School, and earned both her B.S. in Education and Masters in Elementary Education at Buffalo State College. Her forty-year teaching career began upon graduation in 1955.

As a lifelong educator she touched the lives of thousands of children, their parents and the local communities. She taught Grades 4, 5 & 6 for thirteen years at P.S. 66 (now North Park Academy), taught Grade 6 for thirteen more years at P.S. 86 (St. Lawrence Academy). When P.S. 54 became an Early Childhood Center in 1980, Gilda O. Smith was appointed the first Curriculum Coordinator.

Her innovative leadership as Curriculum Coordinator led to School 54 winning the National Award of Excellence from the U.S. Department of Education for the 1986-87 school year. During that same time frame she earned a Certificate of Advanced Study in School Administration and Supervision at Buffalo State College.

Once appointed as Principal of School 54 in 1987, she devoted her energies to the children and their families, dramatically increasing parental engagement and community support. She treated her team of dedicated faculty, administrators and staff as an extended family, united in their cause to improve the lives of children enrolled in their programs. Upon her retirement in 1995, the City of Buffalo’s Common Council issued a resolution that recounted her career and dedicated a new playground at School 54 in her name.

Her devotion to education was matched by her devotion to her family. She was “Auntie Gil” to three nieces, four great nieces, one nephew, one great nephew, and their spouses and partners all of whom she treated as her own.

A loyal Buffalo Bills fan since 1960 she tried to never miss a televised game and cheered them on regardless of their standing. She was a kind and gentle person who also fiercely defended her beloved City of Buffalo. Our hometown is better for her dedication to generations of our children.

Mass of Christian burial to be celebrated at the UB Newman Center, 495 Skinnersville Road, Amherst, NY on Friday, September 21 at 10:30am.

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Service
University at Buffalo Newman Center
495 Skinnersville Road
Amherst, NY 14228
Friday, September 21, 2018
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Charities

Camp Good Days & Special Times
6430 Transit Rd. Suite 200
Depew, NY 14043