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 www.heilschuessler.com.
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.