Passing of Shirley “Lee” Morrissey Smith, 17th company

Posted: 10/13/2021
Sad News: Shirley “Lee” Morrissey Smith, 17th company
Shirley Smith (March 11, 1961 – October 3, 2021)
Cary, North Carolina – Shirley “Lee” Morrissey Smith passed away October 3, 2021 at the age of 60 at her home in Cary, North Carolina after a three-and-a-half-year battle with lung cancer. A virtual memorial will be held with family and friends at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that memorial gifts be made in Lee’s name to the American Cancer Society, or Transitions LifeCare.
Lee was born March 11, 1961 in Groton, Connecticut, the third of four children born to Captain John Noel Morrissey, USN and Barbara Ann Hatch Morrissey. Lee grew up on various military bases including tours with her family in Groton, CT, Alexandria, VA, the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD, and Boston, MA. She graduated from Fort Hunt High School in Alexandria, VA in 1979, finishing as the valedictorian of her class and was a member of the record setting high school girls track team. Lee went on to attend the US Naval Academy for one year, then transferred to Virginia Tech where she earned a BS in Computer Science. She was an active member of the Sigma Kappa sorority. Later, she earned an MS in Computer Engineering at NC State. Lee worked as a programmer for IBM for 10 years. There, she met her future husband, Timothy Smith. Lee and Tim were married in the Duke University Chapel in 1987. They lived in the Raleigh and Cary area throughout their 34 years of marriage raising their two children and one guinea pig.
Lee was the consummate mom, doing everything she could to raise her kids to be kind, generous, and caring. She was a very engaged parent, assisting with school functions, dance trips, recitals, tennis matches, cross country races, swim meets, and even debate contests. When going to one of the debate contests, she had planned to just give the group of kids a ride. But, she was asked to judge a debate even though she had never been trained to be a judge. They couldn’t have picked a better person! Lee was also a big fan of water aerobics at the A.E. Finley YMCA. There she developed special friendships that she enjoyed far beyond the exercise.
Lee is survived by her husband Timothy; their daughter and her fiancé, Jaclyn Smith and Connor Daly; their daughter and son-in-law, Jamie and Alex Shiels; two sisters Jane Morrissey Hybsch and Nancy Morrissey; and one brother John Noel Morrissey Jr. as well as many nieces and nephews.
Published by The News & Observer