Donald J. Smith, age 91, of Sturgis, and formerly of Colon, passed away early Friday morning, Sept. 16, 2011, at Thurston Woods Village in Sturgis.
He was born May 12, 1920, in South Milford, Ind., a son of the late Donald and Mamie (Enos) Smith.
Don had resided in the Colon and Sturgis area most of his life and was a graduate of Colon High School with the class of 1938. Following his graduation from high school, he worked for his father for two years as an electrician. He then enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1940 and served during World War II in the South Pacific, including Luzon and the Philippine Islands earning the rank of Tech Sergeant in communications. In 1945, he received and honorable discharge but continued to serve as an Army Reserve during the Korean Conflict until 1948.
In 1947, Mr. Smith married Delores Zelt and they were married until her death in 1977. In 1979, he married Joan Hubner-Littman and they were soulmates until her death in 2010.
Mr. Smith worked as the plant manager at Formed Tubes in Sturgis, later to be Rood Industries, until his retirement.
He and his wife Joan had many happy years living at the lake and traveling. Mr. Smith was a member of the Trinity Lutheran Church in Sturgis and dedicated his life to the Lord. He was also a member of Neuman-Wenzel Post #73 American Legion in Sturgis.
He is survived by his three stepchildren, Karl (Mary) Littman and Kris Whitesell both of Sturgis and Ron (Darlene) Littman of San Antonio, Texas; four grandchildren, Erika Littman and Miranda Whitesell, both of Sturgis, Megan (Eric) Zagon of Mendon and Sonny Borji of Shipshewana, Ind.; and five great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wives; and a brother, Arthur Dean Smith.
In accordance with his wishes, cremation has taken place. A memorial graveside service and burial of the ashes will be held at 1:30 p.m. Friday at Oak Lawn Cemetery in Sturgis. The Rev. Barry Sommerfield of Celebration Community Church in Sturgis will officiate.
Full military honors will be conferred by Captain John J. Kelley Post #1355 VFW and the U.S. Army Honor Guard.
The Hackman Family Funeral Homes — Hackman Chapel, 114 S. Nottawa St., Sturgis, is entrusted with the arrangements.
The family suggests those wishing to make a memorial donation in Mr. Smith’s memory consider the Trinity Lutheran Church, 406 S. Lakeview Ave., Sturgis, MI 49091 or the Celebration Community Church, 211 N. Nottawa St., Sturgis, MI 49091.
His obituary is also at www.hackmanfamilyfuneralhome.com, where personal messages of support may be left for the family.