Josephine W. (Getzman) Smith

September 21, 1922 ~ May 4, 2018 (age 95)

Greenfield- Surrounded by family, Josephine W. Smith passed away in the peace and comfort of her home. She was able to spend her last days at home, under the care of her family and the comforting assistance of Hospice.

Born in London, England in 1922 to Joseph and Winifred (Stone) Getzman, Jo was educated in Darthmouth, Devonshire. From the age of 17-21 she worked at the Air Transport Auxiliary, a British civilian organization set up during World War II and headquartered at White Waltham Airfield. Jo was the voice on the radio that pilots relied upon to guide their new, repaired or damaged aircraft in and out of the base. In 1943 she married Peter H. Peel.

In 1947, alone she boarded a Greek Liberty Ship (a cargo ship), no one spoke English, and spent 16 days at sea traveling to the United States, eventually settling in West Hawley, MA with relatives who had immigrated from Switzerland. Soon after, Jo went to work in a North Adams factory and then at Mohawk Park in Charlemont as a waitress to support her two young children as a single mother. Later, she worked in Greenfield at the Tap and Die for 5 years.

In 1954 she married Richard A. “Smitty” Smith. Together they raised 4 additional children. Later in life, Jo worked at the Candlelight Motor Inn restaurant as a waitress which she thoroughly enjoyed, and then at the Franklin Medical Center working in the pharmacy department for 20 years until her retirement in 1991.

Jo spent many hours tending her home and lovely English garden. She was an avid reader and relished the moments when she could lose herself in the story. However, what she loved and appreciated most was her family. As she aged, Jo enjoyed the daily visits each of her children would make. Sunday mornings were spent with many family members together.

Jo was predeceased by her husband Richard in 2007.

She is survived by her 6 children, Richard Peel (Mary), Carol Bresciano (Bob Weiss), Valerie Rowell (Richard), Suzanne Smith, Barbara Williams (Larry), and Janice Smith. Jo also leaves 8 grandchildren, Tony Bresciano, Greg Bresciano, Jamie Cote, Angela Johnson, Samantha Vesce, Jennifer Aiston, Jaclyn Aiston  and Aleta Smith; as well as 9 great- grandchildren.

 At Jo's request there will be no services.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Hospice of Franklin County, 329 Conway St. #2, Greenfield MA 01301.

Arrangements are under the direction of the Kostanski Funeral Home.  Sympathy message available at


© 2019 Kostanski Funeral Home, Inc.. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS