Jocelyn S. Baumgarten, 93, passed away peacefully at the Solace Center Hospice in Asheville, NC on December 21, 2021. She lived independently and on her own terms until a fall with no outward injuries led to complications a few days later. Thankfully, her four children were able to gather and be with her during her final days.
Jocelyn was born in Boston, MA to George Willard and Helen Farrar Warren Smith. She was a graduate of The Windsor School, Mount Holyoke College and Radcliffe College’s Management Training Program. Following WWII, she participated in two summer reconstruction camps in France that were organized by the Experiment for International Living. Through that same organization, her family hosted a young Dutchman, Wilhelm A. Baumgarten, which happily led to a courtship and their marriage in 1954.
Jocelyn and Wil settled in Asheville, NC where all their children were born. She was active in the Junior League, Children’s Welfare League, Friends of the Library, PTA, the First Presbyterian Church Choir and her wonderful and enduring book club. They moved to Atlanta, GA in 1979, and were thrilled to return to Asheville in 1999 where they became a part of the Crowfields Condominiums community. She contributed to, edited and published the “Crowfields Chatter” monthly newsletter for 15 years, and actively supported and initiated social groups and activities in the Crowfields community.
Known for her memory for names and people and her desire to bring people together, she strove to strengthen friendships and create inclusive, caring communities wherever she lived. She loved meeting new people and was genuinely interested in their life stories. She enjoyed travel and delighted in hosting foreign students and groups in her home. It was extremely important to her to keep her far-flung extended family connected to each other; she faithfully sent birthday greetings and stayed in touch with family and friends in the US, the Netherlands and around the world. She will be greatly missed.
Jocelyn is predeceased by her parents, her husband of 57 years, Wil Baumgarten, and her oldest sister, Beverly Smith Lovell. She is survived by her older sister, Alison Smith Jordan of Cohasset, MA, her children, Carey Baumgarten of Asheville, John Baumgarten of Durham, NC, George (Barbara) Baumgarten of Cohasset, MA and Peter (Nancy Moore) Baumgarten of Asheville, as well as her beloved grandchildren Matthew (Emily Strong) Price, Alicia Price and Eleanor, Emily and Clara Baumgarten, her great-granddaughter, Alder Strong, and her devoted poodle companion, Bitsy. She also leaves much-loved nieces, nephews, their children and grandchildren, and cherished friends.
It was Jocelyn’s desire that memorial gifts be sent to MemoryCare, an organization dedicated to the care of persons with dementia and their caregivers, where Jocelyn and Wil received invaluable support.
(The SECU Center for MemoryCare, 100 Far Horizons Lane, Asheville, NC 28803 memorycare.org/)
A memorial service will be held in Asheville in 2022 at a date to be determined – another announcement will be posted in the Asheville Citizen-Times.
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