Mrs. Kidd was the mother of my aunt Claudia Barry and the grandmother of my cousins Sonya and Leasha Barry. I had the great joy of seeing Mrs. Kidd most every year on Christmas Eve. I will always remember her distinctive voice and gracious spirit that helped make our times
together so pleasant and enjoyable.
Mary Margaret was born in Edina, Missouri. She was the youngest of three children born to attorney Claud Smith and his wife Ruth.
She showed an early interest in needlework and music – both of which played an important part in the rest of her life. These early passions followed her to the State Teachers College, Kirksville, Mo., where she worked as secretary to the Dean to finance her education. Mary Margaret majored in Home Economics and found her musical niche in the acappella choir. Her love of reading combined with an incredible memory provided her with quips, poetry, and stories for every occasion.
In the summer of 1942 she came to Inglewood, California to visit her aunt and uncle. During her stay she met Nolan Kidd at church. Instead of returning home she married Nolan on New Year’s Day 1943.
She and Nolan raised their two daughters, Susanna and Claudia, in the Los Angeles area. In 1949, Mary Margaret returned to the classroom for 23 years as a Home Economics teacher at Gardena High School and Perry Jr. High School. Many struggling academic students were guided to success
through her home arts program. She enjoyed entertaining people in her home, teaching Sunday School, sewing for her family, and took great joy singing both in the church choir and as a soloist.
After a few years of retirement at the Salton Sea, Mary Margaret and Nolan moved to Leisure World Seal Beach in 1978. To their delight, they reconnected with many friends from the past and enjoyed the proximity to their four grandchildren. During this time they enjoyed many RV excursions. When not
traveling, Mary Margaret participated in DAR, took up oil painting, and continued to sing. Nolan passed away in March 1988.
In 1995, Mary Margaret moved to Quaker Gardens. Her family found comfort in the tender care she received and the many opportunities she was given to express herself in song.