Skip to content Skip to left sidebar Skip to right sidebar Skip to footer

Joanne (Joan) Smith Foster

Joanne (Joan) Smith Foster, age 87, Erwin, passed away on Monday, December 30, 2019 following a lengthy illness.

Joanne was born in Erwin on December 12, 1932 to the late William and Harriet Watts Smith. As a child, she also lived in Crisfield, MD and Baltimore, MD. The family moved to Erwin in the 1940’s and opened Smith’s Cafe and a few years later Smith’s Market. Joanne went to work at an early age. Eventually, she was able to buy the market when her parents retired. As time went on, Joanne owned and operated four convenience stores. In Elizabethton, she also became a landlord and later bought Willow Terrace Apartments in Erwin.

Joanne was a member of Central Baptist Church where she played the organ and piano for more than ten years. She loved this job and her church family. Joanne helped people in need and was a good role model for her family. Upon retirement, she became an avid Solitaire player, enjoyed reading, working puzzles, and watching old westerns.

In 1948, Joanne was married to Edmund Foster until his death in 1993. Two of their four children also preceded her passing; infant Dale Foster and Edmund Foster, Jr. (Eddie). Her two brothers, who lived in Florida, have also passed away, Donald Wray Smith and Freddie Smith.

Survivors of Joanne are as follows: daughter, Donna F. Coffie (Roy); son, Rick Foster (Donna L., Jason, Keith); grandson: Seth Coffie (Amanda); granddaughter, Shanna F. Leach (Todd); great grandchildren: Connor and Savannah Coffie; close family friend, Renee Bowman.

At the request of Joanne, a private service was held on Friday, January 3, 2020 in the Evergreen Mausoleum. Reverend Tim Tapp officiated.

Those wishing to contribute a donation in memory of Joanne, are encouraged to consider the following: Unicoi County Animal Shelter, 185 N. Industrial Drive, Erwin, TN 37650 or Central Baptist Church, Music Fund, 801 Ohio Avenue, Erwin, or any charity of your choice.

Online condolences, photos and memories may be shared with the Foster family through our complimentary, interactive Book of Memories at

Robert Ledford Funeral Home, 720 Ohio Avenue, Erwin, is privileged to serve the Foster family. (423) 743-1380.