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Richard Smith

Richard Smith

Richard Eugen Smith, 71, of Marissa, IL; was born on July 27, 1944 at Rushville, IL; passed away on April 20, 2016 at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Belleville, IL.

Richard Smith was a dozer operator with Peabody Coal Company at River King Mine. He retired from Peabody Coal after 34 years. He was a member of the UMWA and secretary for UMWA Local 1148. He was also a member of Marissa American Legion. He attained the rank of Specialist 4th Class in the United States Army. He was an amateur radio operator and member of the Marissa Amateur Radio Club. He served as a Master Hunting Safety instructor for 29 years, as well as, Marissa volunteer firefighter for 40 years, serving the 13 years as Assistant Chief with his sons and grandsons continuing the tradition. He was an avid fan of the St. Louis Cardinals and Kentucky Wild Cats. In his younger years, he enjoyed outdoor activities, such as gardening, fishing, hunting and mushroom hunting. He also enjoyed helping out with his son’s boy scouts and sports activities.

He was preceded in death by his grandparents: Howard (Irma) Walker of Rushville, IL and Cedar Maple Smith of Rushville, IL; His parents – Virginia Eloise Walker Smith Bryant from Rushville, IL and Clinton Cedar Smith of Mo.; two aunts: Wanda Jean Walker (Eugene) Acheson of Rushville, IL and Maurine Walker Corbridge Reeves of Rushville, IL; one uncle: Eldon Smith of Rushville: two brothers: Gary Lee Smith of Beardstown, IL and Sterling Sidney Smith from Rushville, IL.

He is survived by his wife – Linda Gayle Phelps Smith of Marissa which he married on February 14, 1969 in McHenry, KY.; his children – Becky Lynn (Richard) Kurtz of Darmstadt, IL from his first marriage to Marsha Lynn Reed Herren, Timothy Eugene Smith of Marissa, IL and Matthew Chad (Mary Kay) Smith of Bluffs, IL. His grandchildren – Joseph Robert (Melissa) Kurtz from Oak Forest, IL, Zachary Lee (Brittany) Kurtz of Marissa, IL, Corporal Bradley (Jeana) Kurtz of Grafenwaohr, Germany; Kyra Smith of Marissa, IL; Savannah Robinson, Alexandra (Lexie) Robinson and Chase Conrad Smith of Bluffs, IL. Three great-grandchildren – Reed and Nora Kurtz of Oak Forest, IL and Kinzely Kurtz of Marissa, IL. One brother – Roger William (Sandy) Smith of Chatham, IL. One sister – Becky Pearl Bryant (Vic) Menely of Rushville, IL. One sister-in-law – Zella (Gary) Smith of Beardstown, IL. Two nieces: Tara (Greg) McDaniel of Franklin, IL, and Tammy Robb of Springfield, MO. Three nephews: Ronnie Smith of Sunset, TX, Sterling Smith of Muldrow, OK., and Gary (April) Smith, of Long Lane, MO. He will be sadly missed by the Phelps family.

Memorials may be made to the Marissa Fire Dept. for their Memorial Fire Safety Book Collection at the Marissa Library or their Explorer Youth Group.

The family would like to thank the doctors and nurses that have cared for Dick and to all the friends who visited with him in the nursing home.

Condolences to the family may be expressed online at

Visitation: Friends may call at Heil-Schuessler Funeral Home in Marissa, IL on Thursday, April 28, 2016 from 4:00pm to 6:30pm.

Funeral: Memorial services will be held at Heil-Schuessler Funeral Home in Marissa, IL on Thursday, April 28, 2016 at 6:30pm with Rev. b.c. Dale Bartley officiating.

Heil-Schuessler Funeral Home in Marissa, IL is in charge of arrangements.

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  1. Administrator says:

    Sure survey to hear the news. We have a lot of wonderful memories with Dick and Linda at Marissa Fire Departmrjt What a wonderful friend over the years , he is sorely missed. Blessings and our sympathy to Linda ,the kids grandkids, famiy, friends and the department .

    Posted by: Stan and Bev Lewis – Marissa, IL – Friend Apr 22, 2016

  2. Administrator says:

    Dear Linda and family, We send you our love and prayers. Dick will be remembered for all he did for the Marissa community. Wish we could be with you now. You have 47 wonderful years of memories. May God grant you peace today, tomorrow and in the coming days. We love you. Ken and Sherri

    Posted by: Sherri Wildt – Seminole, FL – Friend Apr 22, 2016

  3. Administrator says:

    Much respect and heartfelt sympathies going out to the family. He was a tough ol guy but it was my honor to have been his nurse. As tough as he acted, he always managed to make me smile.

    Posted by: April Klausing – Coulterville, IL – Acquaintance Apr 22, 2016

  4. Administrator says:

    As one father and son journey ends, one begins.
    Thanks for all the memories. I will never forget.
    Miss you.

    Posted by: Matthew Smith – Bluffs, IL – Son Apr 22, 2016

  5. Administrator says:

    Linda, Becky, Tim, & Matt,
    So very sorry for the loss of a wonderful man who will never be forgotten! He meant so much to so many may his memory live on forever. I’m so glad I was able to be a part of his life, and spend time with him.

    Posted by: Barb Hill – Mascoutah, IL – Friend Apr 22, 2016

  6. Administrator says:

    Tim, Becky, Matt & Aunt Linda,

    Sorry to hear about Uncle Richard passing away. I will always remember coming over and hearing his radios going off in the room next to the kitchen. Wish I could be there for you. Letting you know I am thinking about you guys from Colorado.

    Posted by: Bart Rhein – Denver, CO – Family Apr 23, 2016

  7. Administrator says:

    My sincere condolences on the passing of your husband. It’s been a lot of years, but I I think of you often. Praying for you and your family.

    Rita (Chittenden) Smith

    Posted by: Rita Smith (Chittenden) – Walton, WV – Family Apr 23, 2016

  8. Administrator says:

    You are one of our heroes.
    We will remember you always and miss you dearly.
    Take your Warrior’s rest for a duty well done.

    I wish to extend to members of your family my deepest sympathy on their loss. May the force of GOD be with them as they walk through this difficult time. May the loving promises of our LORD and Savior comfort them and give them

    Posted by: PHIL ODOM – HOUSTON, TX Apr 24, 2016

  9. Administrator says:

    To the family of Richard “Dick” Smith, I humbly ask Our Lord Jesus Christ to comfort each and everyone of you during this moment in your lives. I had met Dick through the Fire Service over the years and what a great person he was! Dick always had a heart of gold to every person he had met in his journey in life. Talk about a dedicated person, Dick would never want any recognition for “ALL of the HEARTS

    Posted by: Mike Wilson – Sparta, IL – Friend Apr 24, 2016

  10. Administrator says:

    Remembering all the family during this time. Dick will be missed by all the family, friends and co workers. He is probably already showing someone in heaven how to operate a firetruck. He truly will be missed.

    Posted by: Ed Rhein – Belleville, IL – Family Apr 25, 2016

  11. Administrator says:

    Very sad to read of Richard’s passing. My sincere condolences to Linda, the kids and family. Richard was one of the founding members of the Marissa Amateur Radio Club and was very active in helping so many become interested in this great hobby. Richard was always on the scene of accidents and disasters always wearing two hats – his fire chief hat along with his ham radio communications ready to call in any additional help. Richard will be greatly missed

    Posted by: BOB HEIL – Pleasant Hope,, MO – Friend Apr 25, 2016

  12. Administrator says:


    Posted by: Peggy Sue Raymond – Osceola, MO – Friend Apr 26, 2016

  13. Administrator says:

    RIP to my brother-in-law Richard Smith. You will be deeply missed. I cherish the memories of fishing, gardening and watching the late night movies with those giant bowls of popcorn! I will never forget you.

    Posted by: David Phelps – Sparta, IL Apr 27, 2016

  14. Administrator says:

    My thoughts and prayers are with you. Dick is in pain no more. Tomorrow we will celebrate Dick’s life. Looking forward to hearing all the stories. Love and hugs to my sweet sister Linda and her beautiful family.

    Posted by: Suzanna Phelps – Belleville, IL Apr 27, 2016

  15. Administrator says:

    Although I am unable to be there to offer my love and support, know that I am thinking of you all. I wish you peace and comfort. May you all come together and share some wonderful memories together! Love you all.

    Posted by: Jill Whitaker – Shiloh, IL – Family Apr 27, 2016

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