Ellen (Smith) Broad
August 10, 1928 — June 7, 2015
Ellen (Smith) Broad died on June 7, 2015 from heart related issues. She was 86 years old. She was born on August 10, 1928 in Barnesville, Georgia to Flossie and Rory Smith. She had two sisters (Christine and Barbara, both deceased) and a brother (Quillian, deceased).
Ellen attended Gordon Military School, Shorter College, and the University of North Carolina, graduating in 1949 with a BA in Dramatic Arts . While at UNC, she met her future husband, Alfred (Carter) Broad. Ellen and Carter were married on April 10, 1950. They were married for 50 years. Early in their marriage, they lived in North Carolina, where Ellen taught pre-school. They had one daughter, Susan, while living in North Carolina. In 1957 the family moved to Columbus, Ohio. They moved to Bellingham, WA in 1964. After Carter retired in 1988 they built a second home in Friday Harbor, WA, doing much of the finish work themselves. They enjoyed spending time and had many good friends in both places.
Ellen was a stay-at-home Mom until Susan was in high school, at which time she and her good friend Margurite Goltz opened “A Shop For One Season,” a seasonal Christmas ornament shop, later including candy and featuring Christmas ornaments from around the world all year long. The shop was very successful. Upon selling the business, Ellen started an in-home crafts business, “Celebrations”. Ellen made ornaments, wreaths and flower arrangements, and wove baskets. She was always a talented craftsperson, and loved tinkering in her shop. She was a member of an artist’s cooperative gallery in Friday Harbor, and especially enjoyed the craft fairs she participated in there and in Bellingham. She got many of her materials from nature, and loved walking on the beach and picking up rocks and driftwood to use later in her creations.
Ellen was a very social person and had many friends. She enjoyed entertaining and was known from coast to coast for her martinis. Gin, of course! If you stopped by Ellen’s around 5 p.m. you were sure to be offered a martini – and many people did!
Carter died in 2001. In her Christmas letter that year, Ellen reported that she thought she was getting pretty competent at living alone, having “installed a filter on my kitchen faucet, a caller ID on my telephone, and a new toilet seat – all by myself and they all work!” After Carter’s death, Ellen enjoyed participating in Elderhostel classes and traveling to visit family and friends around the country.
Ellen moved to the Olympic Peninsula in 2010 to be nearer to her daughter. She lived briefly in Sequim, and then at Seaport Landing in Port Townsend for one year. After suffering a stroke, she moved to San Juan Villa in Port Townsend, where she was known and loved by the staff for her sense of humor, and her feisty temperament. She lived at San Juan Villa for a little over 2 years.
Ellen will be greatly missed by her friends, family, especially daughter Susan and her husband Andy McGregor, and granddaughter Melissa, all of Port Townsend. The family wishes to thank the wonderful and compassionate staff at San Juan Villa for making Ellen’s years there full of music, laughter, and love. We could not have asked for better caregivers and friends.
Memorial gifts may be made to the Biology Faculty Fellowship Fund at Western Washington University. Mail gifts to the WWU Foundation- Biology Faculty Fellowship, 516 High Street, MS-9034, Bellingham, WA, 98225.