Donna Hope Betasso Smith

Donna Hope Betasso Smith, 86, of Centennial, Wyoming, a former member of the Laramie County Community College Board of Trustees, died on July 29, 2017.

Smith was born on Aug. 2, 1930 in Boulder, Colorado. She grew up in Boulder and graduated from Boulder High School in 1948. In high school, she was she was named Miss Merry Christmas, a big honor. As Smith attended the University of Colorado, she worked as an advertiser at the Boulder Daily Camera, and later graduated with a journalism degree in 1952.

After moving to Cheyenne in 1952, Smith was the only woman in the Cheyenne Tribune Eagle’s advertising department. She later married Franklin James Smith, a detective of the Cheyenne Police Force, in 1958.

While she lived in Cheyenne, she became the host of Cheyenne Today, a talk radio show on KFBC, and later hosted a television talk show. She served on the LCCC Board of Trustees from 1980 to 1983 and also owned a public relations and advertising firm.

Some of Smith’s career highlights included writing a weekly humor column called “Etc.” for the Wyoming Tribune Eagle and teaching public relations and advertising classes at the University of Wyoming.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Ray and Bonnie Betasso; and two sisters: Garry Lowe of Denver, Colorado, and Betty Ray Lesch of Carson City, Nevada. She is survived by her husband of 59 years, Franklin Smith; three children, Christine Schulman of Portland, Oregon, Todd Smith of Saratoga, Wyoming, and Dana Smith of Denver, Colorado; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

About Jacob Hamel (23 Articles)
Jacob has been involved with Wingspan since the fall 2015 semester. He was also a co-editor for two semesters before taking a job as editor for the Platte County Record-Times for six months. Though he plans to finish being a staff member for Wingspan this semester, he looks forward to volunteering and assisting future students of the program. Last year, Wingspan helped Jacob find a love for writing humor commentary, and he has even won awards for his columns. His columns have been included in almost every issue of Wingspan since late 2017. On top of working with Wingspan, Jacob currently works as a part-time control board operator for 1480 KRAE. Contact Jacob via email at or follow him on Twitter at JHamelWingspan.

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