Janessa (Gohdes) Smith

janessa (gohdes) smith
Janessa “Jaye” Nicole (Gohdes) Smith was born December 8th, 1980, at Dakota Hospital in Fargo, ND to Keith and Mary (Kringler) Gohdes.  She attended school in Casselton, graduating as an honor student from Central Cass High School in 1999.  While in school she was very active in sports – mainly basketball.  She enjoyed being able to play on the same team as her sister Brianna.  After graduation, Jaye founded the “Sistaz” pep club in support of her sisters’ athletics.  She was musical and played trumpet in the concert and stage band.  She was awarded the John Phillip Sousa Award her senior year.  One of her fondest memories was being encouraged by Mr. Wald to sing in the CCHS Variety Show.  Jaye sang in the show 3 years in a row and was proud of her accomplishment.  She was class president both junior and senior year at CCHS.  She attended Close Up in Bismarck for 2 years which instilled a lifelong interest in government.  She attended college at MSUM and completed her degree at the University of Mary.  Jaye began working at US Bank Service Center in 2004 and worked in various roles there since that time.  She was very proud to be employed by US Bank.  She loved her job and enjoyed her work family. Jaye was married to Timothy Smith in 2006.  They had one child, Sayler, who was born in 2009.  Jaye was a lifelong member of the Canaan Moravian Church being baptized, confirmed, and married there.  Her faith was important to her and helped sustain her in her times of struggle.  She taught Sunday School and helped write the script for the Sunday School Christmas program for several years. Jaye packed a lot of living into her 39 years.  She was a very social person, always wanting to connect with friends.  Jaye loved to sing karaoke, especially at the Detroit Lake Holiday Inn with her crew – you know who you are!  Favorite selections were 80’s power ballads such as “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll” and “Hit Me With Your Best Shot”.  More recently she loved spending time with the Sprenger’s in “The Office” listening to Andy play guitar and sing. Jaye loved to read and write.  She kept up to date on celebrity news by reading US Weekly from cover to cover.  Her favorite book series was Harry Potter.  She loved everything Harry Potter!  She was an avid KFGO listener and would listen throughout the day.  She had a distinct quality in her voice which led to one of her favorite part-time jobs as a radio deejay.  Over the years, Jaye developed a habit of journaling.  Some nights when sleep evaded her, she would write for 2 or 3 hours in her journal.  Jaye also kept an elaborate planner documenting all appointments complete with decorative stickers.  It was a work of art!  Jaye always wanted to present her best self and would apply her make-up meticulously, and we can’t forget the glitter!!  She had a unique and eclectic style! Jaye was very politically minded – a diehard liberal – and was not afraid to express her opinion.  She had a great memory which allowed her to recollect even the most minute details about events both recent and also from years past.  Jaye had a big heart.  She loved her cousins, especially her childhood playmates Staci and Eric.  Jaye had a special place in her heart for her nieces, baby Elsie, and 4-year-old Hazel who was one of the few people she let call her JJ.  But most of all, she loved her pride and joy, Sayler Sylvia Jaye, whom she lovingly referred to as Peanut.  They had a very special bond and enjoyed each other's company, ending every day spent together with girl talk.  Jaye loved her sisters and was proud of the fact she always had their backs, protecting them and paving their way.  Jaye was always interested in their lives.  Jaye also loved her pets and farm life.  She enjoyed looking out at the cows, watching deer sleeping in her yard, and the many different types of birds.  She even had chickens for a short period of time, naming each one.  One thing she disliked was the flock of turkeys that invaded her yard.  Recently she and Sayler were given 3 barn cats.  Jaye loved those cats.  She also had a house cat, Rex, who would snuggle in to comfort her. Jaye loved her parents.  She strove to please them.  She was proud to live in her grandparents’ home.  And she always left the light on in the kitchen for her dad.  The bond she formed with her Mom was very strong.  At the end of her life, Jaye expressed her great love for her mother and the compassion shown for her.  “Mom, you are my best friend”. Janessa died peacefully on January 1, 2020 at the age of 39.  Janessa is survived by her daughter Sayler, parents Keith and Mary Gohdes, sisters Brianna (Rob) Stock, Alyssa (Lucas) Palczewski, nieces Elsie Stock and Hazel Palczewski, Aunts and Uncles, Melanie Fransen, Ki Gohdes, Stephen (Heidi) Gohdes, Jennifer (Gary) Gillis, Ruth (Mike) Fuller, John Kringler, Curtiss Mundahl and many cousins.  She was preceded in death by her grandparents: Alvin and Sylvia Gohdes and Robert and Ruth Kringler, aunts Roberta Mundahl and Jan Kringler.

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  1. I’m so sorry to hear of Janessa’s passing. I enjoyed visiting with Janessa when she would stop by Howard & Marilyn Gohdes’ farm when I would visit them from California. She was so easy to converse with. Heartfelt condolences to the entire Gohdes/Smith families.

  2. I am sad for your passing, Janessa. This was quite the shock to hear. I remember you and my sister Rachel and Melanie always up to something. RIP Janessa. Heaven gained another Angel. Way too soon. God bless. Love, James.

  3. I am so sorry for your profound loss. My heart aches for the you. In time, may you come to know peace and rest. Perhaps that peace and rest can be found in leaning in and letting go and trusting the One who understands it all and rules it all for our good and His glory. Deepest sympathy. Paula Diemert Wright

  4. So sorry for your loss. I spent a short period of time with Janessa at The University of Mary. She was a joy to attend class with and such a spitfire! Thoughts and prayers to you.

  5. Our deepest sympathy to your family during this difficult time and the days to come, may God help relieve some pain and keep you in his loving arms.

  6. Our deepest sympathies. Sending prayers for peace that passes understanding.

  7. I am so sorry for your loss. Times like these there are few words to say. Just know our hearts are hurting too and we are here for you all. Love and prayers.

  8. Mary, Keith, Sayler and family, There are no words to say, just wanted to express my sympathy to to all of you. I so very much enjoyed Janessa when she came in to the office and all of the Gohdes family were/are special people. I was so pleased when Janessa requested me for a FB friend after I retired. You have all been in my thoughts and prayers. Darlys Thomas

  9. I am very sorry for your loss. Janessa was a very talented woman and she will be missed by so many. May she rest in peace and I pray that God will help you through this time of sorrow.

  10. Mary,
    I remember your joy when Janessa, and each of your girls were born. It is unimaginable to contemplate your grief. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  11. Keith, Mary & family,
    Your in our thoughts & prayers. Sympathies to all.

    Andy & Julie Levos & family

  12. Dear Mary,
    I was so shocked to read this news about your daughter! I know we have lost touch for years, but distant cousins are still cousins. ♥️ My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family and the entire Kringler & Ghodes family. Hopefully, Roberta was waiting to welcome her home.. 💜💜💜.

  13. Keith, Mary and family – we are so sorry for your loss. We pray for you and your family during this difficult time.

    With love, Chad and Stephanie Kost

  14. I am so very sorry for your loss. May God comfort you and give peace during such a difficult time. Praying for all who loved her so.

  15. Mr. Ghodes and Mary & Family…..I’m so very sorry for your great Loss. Please know that you will all be in my prayers for the days to come.

  16. Keith, Mary and family,
    I’m so sorry to hear of the passing of your beautiful daughter. Having a daughter about the same age, I can’t imagine losing her and the grief you must feel. Please know I am keeping your family in my thoughts and prayers. May God keep you close.

  17. Kieth, Mary, & family,
    You all have our sincere sympathy during this very difficult time. May she Rest In Peace!
    Dick & Irene Sinner

  18. Mary and Bri and family, I’m so sorry for you loss. There’s nothing I can say to make you pain go away, but know that God loves you. Share your great memories, see her beauty in every day, hold each other tight and cry when ever you feel like it. I know what you’re going through Bri. I lost my best friend, my sister when I was 23. I miss her every day. May God give you comfort and peace in the coming days, month and years.
    Pat Olson

  19. Keith, Mary and Family,
    We are soo sorry for your loss! Keeping you in our thoughts and prayers during these very, very difficult days!

  20. Keith and Mary,
    I’m a friend of Janessa’s from collage. Janessa always had a kind smile and was an accepting, intelligent, charismatic lady. I feel fortunate to have met her and witness her strengths and her ability to debate her side on subjects she had such a passion for.

    Keith, Mary, and family I pray the love for Janessa is forever carried in your memory because she is gone from our sight, but never from our hearts.

    Please accept my heartfelt sympathies for your loss

  21. We are so, so sorry for your loss as a family. Our prayers and deepest sympathies to you all.

  22. We are so saddened and sorry for your family’s loss of Janessa. We send our prayers and deepest sympathy.

  23. What a loss for your family. I worked with Janessa sometime ago at Nelco. She was a joy! I loved her laugh and her smile was infectious. After she left Nelco we kept in touch and I was thrilled when she became a mother to dear Saylor. My heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  24. We are so sorry for your loss. Janessa was a regular at our salon on 17th Ave. We loved having her come in, she was always the loudest and funniest in the room. She will be missed by all of us here.

  25. I met Janessa in college; we shared multiple friends and hung out many times. Janessa had such a friendly smile and acceptance, I loved her raspy voice and always knew she’d Dj one day !! Maybe we mostly partied together and shared laughs and experiences back then, but I also reconnected with her over the last several years of illness/ troubles. I always looked at her as the same Janessa I knew, never judging, we recently had messaged each other and expressed how it would be nice to get together over coffee and catch up outside our random run ins …… I’m sad and regretting that did not get to happen. I was out of country when the funeral occurred and very saddened I could not have attended. A beautiful spirit who I am thankful to have seen and known over the years and been a friend to until the end. Truly sorry for your loss. What a beautiful angel she will be, my thoughts are with your family and my tears have been shed for Janessa.

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