Mary Elizabeth Klein (Smith), 103, Independence, Missouri, died Sunday, May 22, 2011, at the Villages of Jackson Creek.

Mary Elizabeth Klein (Smith), 103, Independence, Missouri, died Sunday, May 22, 2011, at the Villages of Jackson Creek.

Mrs. Klein was born August 20, 1907, in Independence, Missouri, the eldest of five children. She attended Ott Elementary School and William Chrisman High School. She served many years as a long distance telephone operator, first in Independence, then in Kansas City, and finally in Los Angeles, California, where she retired in 1969. After spending sixty years in California, she moved back to Independence to be closer to her family and resided at the Fountains for ten years. One of her pastime loves was ballroom dancing. She stopped at age 100, after her last partner passed away. She was also an avid baseball fan, first of the Los Angeles Dodgers and then the Kansas City Royals, for the past ten years. When you found her watching TV, it was most likely either the Royals or Dancing with the Stars. She was married to Ted Klein of Los Angeles for thirty-four years, prior to his death in 1986.

Her survivors include nieces, Nancy Brown and husband, Larry Brown, of Blue Springs, MO; Reggie Pabo of Cedar City, UT; and nephews Ron Maupin and wife, Sandra Maupin, Bolivar, MO; James Maupin and wife, Lisa Bond-Maupin, Las Cruces, NM; and Greg Smith, Minneapolis, MN. In addition, she had numerous great nieces and nephews.

The Family expresses their gratitude to the staff at the Villages of Jackson Creek and Grace Hospice for their wonderful care.

In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that contributions, in Mary Klein’s name, be sent to Grace Hospice, 9233 Ward Parkway, Suite 201, Kansas City, MO 64114.

A memorial service will be held at the New Salem Baptist Church, 1805 North Blue Mills Road, Independence, MO, on Wednesday, June 1, 2011, at 11 a.m.

Online condolences and memories may be left at www.speakschapel.com.

Arrangements: Speaks Suburban Chapel, (816)373-3600.