She grew up on her family's hop farm in St. Paul, until graduating high school from Sacred Heart Academy with honors in 1978 and going onto college at both Seattle University and Western Oregon State College.
A highly accomplished cowgirl and avid cutting horse competitor, Jennifer comes from a long line of hop growers and western enthusiasts with a passion for family, horses and a love for the land. She married Kevin Crosby and into the Crosby hop story in August of 1984. Jennifer and Kevin have two children, Blake and Jacqueline Crosby. Jennifer shared her love of gardening, music and agriculture with her son Blake and her love for horses and western culture with her daughter Jackie.
As a board member and owner of Crosby Hop Farm, she was instrumental in driving the direction of the family business and was the best hop dryer to ever tend the Crosby kilns. A lifelong member of the St. Paul Rodeo, Jennifer served as committee chair of the Wild West Art Show for several years. Like many relatives before her, Jennifer carried on the Ernst-Smith family tradition when she was crowned St. Paul Rodeo Queen in 1981, a legacy that was continued on by her daughter Jackie in 2012. It's been said that Jennifer and her horse Smoke were one of the finest pairs to ever grace the arena.
Jennifer had a strong Catholic faith and enjoyed attending mass with the Benedictine Sisters of Queen of Angels Monastery in Mt. Angel. Driven by her bright and courageous spirit, and her fierce love for her children, Jennifer fought long and hard after being diagnosed with grade four glioblastoma in 2014. She was held in love and light by her family and friends as she crossed over on March 8, 2019. Jennifer is survived by her husband, Kevin Crosby, her children, Blake and Jacqueline Crosby, her parents, Samuel and Claudia Smith, and her siblings, Kay Ford, Monte Smith, Jeanne Zielinski, and Stefanie Smith.
Please join us in celebration of a life beautifully lived on Friday March 15, 11:00 am at Saint Luke Catholic Church, 417 Harrison Street, Woodburn. A rosary service will also be held Thursday, March 14, at 7:00 pm with viewing beginning at noon at Simon Cornwell Colonial Chapel Funeral Home, 390 N 2nd Street, Woodburn. Those who so desire may make memorial donations in memory of Jennifer to the National Brain Tumor Society.