Saralee Smith of Gloucester, Mass., died Monday at Den Mar Rehabilitation and Nursing Center after battling the effects of Parkinson’s Disease for over two decades. She was 77 years old.
Born in Boston, she was the only daughter of the late Charles and Ruth (Kaplan) Vigman.
Saralee graduated from Boston University with a Master’s Degree in clinical psychology. She also attended B.U. as an undergraduate and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in the same field.
Saralee worked in private practice for many years in Boston and Brookline as a clinical psychologist. She took pride in helping patients from all socioeconomic backgrounds. In addition, Saralee worked for a number of nonprofit health agencies including the Pine Street Inn in Boston, which is the largest resource for homeless men and women in New England. As head clinician there, she focused on the needs of this vulnerable population and always went the extra mile in caring for them.
Saralee was an avid reader, chess player and had a beautiful voice. She was a member of the chorus in high school. Her thirst for learning and propensity to check facts resulted in many late night discussions. Prior to Google, she would call the Boston Public Library to verify information with research librarians. She also loved animals of all kinds and adopted many cats over the years. Curiously, the names of her cats (Buzzy, Penny, Buffy, etc.) always ended in the letter y.
Left to cherish her memory are her son and daughter-in-law, Joseph and Georgia Smith of Gloucester, Mass.; and her daughter and son-in-law, Susan and John LaPeter of Port St. Lucie, Fla.
A graveside funeral service will be held on Wednesday, September 13, at 11 a.m. in Netzach Israel Cemetery, Fuller Street, Everett, Mass. In keeping with her advocacy for homeless animals, the family asks that donations in her memory be made to Cape Ann Animal Aid, 4 Paws Lane, Gloucester, MA 01930.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Stanetsky Hymanson Memorial Chapel, 10 Vinnin St., Salem, MA 01970. For more information or to register in the online guestbook, please visit www.stanetskyhymansonsalem.com.
Published on  September 13, 2017