Glenda Marie Dris, née Smith, passed away due to complications from her decades-long courageous battle with metastatic ovarian cancer at 65-years-young on Saturday, April 11, 2020 in Duncan, Oklhoma.
Born in Key West, Florida to Bobby and Margarita Smith, Glenda grew up in a Naval family that lived all over, including Puerto Rico and Guantanamo Bay during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Her family settled into St. Petersburg, FL in 1970. She graduated from St. Petersburg High School (Go, Green Devils!) in 1973, the year she won the Miss St. Petersburg Beauty Pageant. She attended St. Petersburg Jr. College and then lived in Gainesville, falling in love with UF, “The Swamp,” and meeting lifelong friends (Go, Gators!).
Glenda was both industrious and loved helping others; every job she had reflected those qualities. She began working at Maas Bros. Dept. Store and the Bayfront Center, catering to VIPs at nightly concerts and events. During this time, she met Stephen Dris; they wed in August 1982. Next, her dream career -- with the airlines. Starting with Piedmont Airlines in 1985, by 1988 she was one of their Lead Agents.
That same year she and Steve welcomed their son, Michael Patrick, to their new home in Fayetteville, NC where she worked with her favorite carrier, American Airlines, until 1993. She looked back on this period as one of the best times of her life.
After her divorce, she shifted both her life (to Dunedin, FL) and career (to Travel Consultant). Excelling in her new path, she worked at SATO in conjunction with the military at Ft. Bragg and MacDill, and finally joined BCD Travel as concierge to International VIP clientele.
She loved travel, singing, and all animals, especially elephants and green parrots. Her favorite vacations included the Cayman Islands (swimming with stingrays), London (walking 10 miles/day), Bermuda, Lake Louise, Port St. Joe, and L.A. (visiting her son). At the time of her passing, she was working on a children’s book featuring various critters she had grown fond of while living in Oklahoma.
Adored mother to Michael Dris (Julia); beloved daughter of Margarita Smith, late Bobby Smith; sister of Laverne Potter (Greg), Robert Smith (Rene); aunt of Bill Potter, Lynlee Davies (Sebastian), Adam Smith (Eva), Amber Smith; and treasured friend of Sue Nicolette.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in Glenda’s honor to the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/donate). Arrangements are under the care of Don Grantham Funeral Home. Condolences may be left for the family at www.granthamfuneralhomes.com
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