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ASHLAND – Lela (Bowen) Smart, 64 of Ashland formerly of Newton and Natick passed away May 12,2021 after a 14-month battle with cancer.

  Born and raised in Waltham, she was the daughter of the late Ralph and Ellen (Cross) Bowen and wife of Gregory Smart of Ashland. 

A graduate of Aquinas College in Newton, Lela worked as a preschool teacher for many years in several Metrowest towns. 

She would later serve as an elder care companion for a close family friend and was her husband’s main caregiver before she became sick in 2020.  She loved music, dancing, watching the birds in her backyard, the beach – especially Cape Cod, taking the dog for walks, and spending time and laughing with family and friends.  She will be remembered as a kind, caring, and loving wife, mother, and friend who made friends wherever she went.

  In addition to her husband, she is survived by three children, Jamie Smart of Framingham, and Tom and Andrew Smart of Ashland, four brothers, Ralph Bowen III of Stoughton, William Bowen and his partner Stephen Lundvall of Canton, David Bowen and his wife Cindy of Danvers, and the late Arthur Bowen of Weymouth who died in 2000, several nieces and nephews, and many close friends.

Public visiting hours will be held Sunday May 16 from 2:00-4:30 p.m. in the Matarese Funeral Home, 325 Main St. Ashland, MA. 

Please visit for Covid guidelines.  The funeral service will be private. 

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Vernon Cancer Center, Newton-Wellesley Hospital Development Office, 2014 Washington St., Newton, MA 02462

All visitors to the funeral home are required to wear a face mask. NO EXCEPTIONS

Funeral home visitors entering the funeral home will be limited to 10 at one time. Visitors may be asked to wait outside until room is available. Unfortunately no exceptions can made to this rule for inclement weather.

Condolences with the family should be kept brief so that others may enter after you.

Please exit the funeral immediately after condolences are given to the family to allow others to enter the funeral home.

Please observe barriers placed to provide proper social distancing.

Please refrain from embracing with the family.

By editor

Susan Petroni is the former editor for SOURCE. She is the founder of the former news site, which as of May 1, 2023, is now a self-publishing community bulletin board. The website no longer has a journalist but a webmaster.