‹ Return to Current Obituaries

Order Flowers now for guaranteed delivery before Vergene Smith-'s visitation.

Vergene Smith- Higgins

The funeral will be livestreamed. The link will appear Wednesday below service information

Masks & social distancing observed

Vergene Juanita (Wardrip) Smith/Higgins daughter of Clarence Wardrip and Mae (Marsh) Wardrip was born in Ringgold County Iowa in 1921. She lived her childhood south and east of Delphos and moved to Benton her senior year.  She graduated from Benton in 1940.

 In June 1940 she married Carroll Holden Smith. To this union 2 children were born, Karolyn Jean and Kayla La Rea.  She spent 35 years on a farm south of Mount Ayr.  She enjoyed gardening and was an accomplished seamstress.  While on the farm they would often join friends and play a card game called pitch until the break of dawn and then go home and do farm chores. They moved from the farm to town in 1976 due to Carroll’s health.  He passed away 1988.

In November 1992 Vergene married Frank Edwin Higgins (commonly known as Buck) in Las Vegas, Nevada. They made their home in Mount Ayr, enjoying dancing, ballgames and family activities.  Due to Buck’s health, they moved into Maple Ridge Assisted Living.  She continued to live there after Buck’s passing.  She kept herself busy making many quilts, sewing for others and tending to plants on the back porch.

In December 2013 she was awarded a “50 year pin” for service in Eastern Star.  She was also a member of Rebecca Lodge.

The majority of her life was spent attending the First Christian Church in Mount Ayr.

Vergene passed away on January 24, 2021 at Mount Ayr Health Care. Preceding her in death were her parents; her Husbands, Carroll and Buck; three sisters Viola Deibert, Vera Hartschen, Vesta Shaha and brothers-in-law Arthur Deibert and Rex Shaha. 

Those who remain to cherish her memory are daughters Karolyn Herren (husband Kenneth) of Beaver Dam, Wisconsin and Kayla Main (husband Gary) of Post Falls, Idaho; two granddaughters, Kelly Herren Kreuziger (husband John) and Krista Herren Donahue; two grandsons, Scott Main (wife Julie), and Greg Main (wife Ming); 11 great grandchildren; two great great grandchildren and other relatives and friends.

A graveside service will be held at Rose Hill Cemetery in Mount Ayr at 3:00 p.m. Wednesday, February 3. 

Casketbearers will be Jack, Cody, Courtney and Krista Donahue; Kurt Shaha, Dave Crigger

Honorary Casketbearers are Gary Main, Kenneth Herren, Megan Donahue, Scott Main, Greg Main.

Memorials are to the First Christian Church in Mount Ayr

A memorial service to be announced at a later date

To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Vergene Smith- Higgins, please visit our flower store.


My condolences to Vergenes family. The Wardrips were known to me as a Benton family. My Dad Merle always had high praise for them, especially Vergene and Vesta. I so enjoyed spending time with them at the Legion dances when I went with Dad. Such gracious ladies and always dressed to the nines! Rest in peace, Vergene. I know you are enjoying your family in heaven.

Vickie Butler Pierce Jan 27 2021 12:00 AM

Friends and Family uploaded 45 to the gallery.

Friends and Family Nov 30 -0001 12:00 AM