Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity,
dignity and sound speech that cannot be condemned. Titus 2:7
On October 29, 2021, at approximately 12:57 a.m., Mamye passed away peacefully at home comforted by her family members at 1301- 26th Street in Bessemer, Alabama. Mamye was a gentle and softspoken person with a big smile joyous laugh, and a heart to match.
Mamye L. Smith was the fifth of eleven (11) children born to the proud parents of George and Eliouse Smith on January 01, 1946, in Selma, Alabama.
Mamye was baptized at the age of 12 at Trinity Lutheran Church, Selma, Alabama. After her family moved to Bessemer, Alabama in 1959, she attended and graduated from Brighton High School. Her first year of college was completed at Alabama Lutheran College in Selma, Alabama. As a college student, being active in the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) she became involved in the civil rights movement to help register black citizens to vote. On January 2, 1965, when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke at Brown Chapel A.M.E. Zion Church in Selma, Alabama, Mamye was present. During a protest, Mamye was jailed with Dr. King along with about 100 more protesters, the majority of whom were youth.
After her first year of college, Mamye moved to New York, where her sisters Virginia and Carol lived. Mamye aspired and achieved her dream of studying broadcasting at Career Academy and New York University (NYU). After graduating, she immediately landed her first and only job with the National Broadcast Company (NBC) “The Today Show” in 1969. Mamye was one of the first black Production Assistant at NBC. During her nearly two decades at NBC, she received many awards. Her early retirement was due to her health. Mamye’s travels for both work and leisure took her all over the world.
Mamye special friend and companion, Robert “Bob” Hickey, shared 40 years of their life together. Bob took great care of Mamye. They were friends before they became a couple. Their friendship was perhaps the secret ingredient to their loving relationship. They enjoyed each other’s company and loved to entertain others in the home they shared. She and Bob loved to go on cruises, and often, they planned family trips. Mamye and Bob enjoyed the theater and all of the arts. For nearly 45 years Mamye battled Multiple Sclerosis (MS). However, she never allowed MS to define her. She and Bob were very active with the New York City Chapter of the MS Society. Mamye loved her family and her friends, and they loved her. Mamye loved NBC and cherished the annual (Peacock North) luncheon for retirees. Mamye and Bob attended Holy Innocence Catholic Church in Brooklyn, New York.
In 2017, Mamye and Bob relocated to Alabama. Since then, she has been in the care of her family in the home of her sister, Verlyne. Also, her nieces Monica, Crystal and Cyonne have been very helpful with her care.
She was preceded in death by: her parents, George and Eliouse Smith; brothers, Christopher Smith, George Smith, Jr., Ronald J. Smith, Nathan B. Smith and a sister, Willie Ann Paries Hill.
She is survived by: her lifelong partner, Robert Maurice Hickey; five sisters, Virginia (Jean Claude) Dambreville, Carolyn Smith, Lymbra (Cashuh) Key, Verlyne Moten, and Steronica Mattocks; a very special loved one, Kathryn Frost; three brothers, Theophilus Smith, William Hall and Quintous Dunston; nieces, Mona (Derrick) Zinnerman, Daisy Teresa Paries, Nancy Paries (Andre) Holmes, Felisha (Travis) Gaffney, Monica (Marc) Townsend, Cyrena Molten (Christopher) Chapman, Crystal Key (Emmanuel) Dei, Safiya (Sidney) Smith, Amber, Madison and Kyndall Dunston; nephews, Cashuh Key, III, Timotheus Paries and Malachi Mattocks; four very special cousins, Robert Hall, Hester Hall, Melvin Hall and Willie Dorsey; a host of dearly loved great and great-great nieces and nephews.