Author, restaurateur, lifestyle maven Barbara Elaine Smith, known to fans as B. Smith, has passed away at the age of 70.
Smith’s husband, Dan Gasby, confirmed the news Sunday morning, stating that the beloved businesswoman had passed away peacefully at her home in Long Island, New York.
“Heaven is shining even brighter now that it is graced with B.’s dazzling and unforgettable smile,” Gasby wrote.
Smith revealed she was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease in 2014 at the age of 64, telling fans, “I’m going to do my best to make it work out for me, and for as many people that I can possibly help, too.”
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Smith appeared on multiple ESSENCE covers, including the October 1975, September 1976, April 1977, March 1982, and March 1984 issues.
The entrepreneur was a former model turned restaurateur who opened a chain of restaurants in New York and Washington, D.C. She penned three cookbooks: B. Smith Cooks Southern Style, B. Smith’s Entertaining and Cooking for Friends, B. Smith’s Rituals and Celebrations and documented her journey following her diagnosis with early-onset Alzheimer’s in the 2016 book Before I Forget.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Smith’s family and friends.