T. Champ Smith, 74, of Delaware died Saturday afternoon (April 13, 2013) at home surrounded by his family.
He was born on July 3, 1938, in Rockbridge, Ohio, to the late J. Grant and Grethel M. (Vess) Smith. A graduate of Rockbridge High School in 1956, he received his B.S. in agricultural science from the Ohio State University
While in Lancaster, Shirley Beckley caught his eye at a high school dance and they were married in 1959. Together they have shared 53 wonderful years, raising a family and supporting each other through the joys and trials of life. They were stationed in Hawaii for a brief time during his service in the U.S. Army.
He worked as the manager of the Bucyrus Kroger store before moving to Delaware in 1970. For over 33 years he worked with the Kroger Company in various capacities. Using his amazing capacity for hard work, Champ developed a number of rental properties. He saw potential in everything and was talented at rehabilitating property.
He was at his best at home on the farm and loved Hereford cattle. Even in his last days, he still managed to talk about the farm. He served as a 4-H advisor for the Stratford Livestock Club and was an active member of the Stratford St. Paul's United Methodist Church, where he sang in the choir.
Champ was a former member of the Bucyrus Kiwanis Club, the Delaware Elk's, Hamburger Inn Coffee Club, Columbus Jaycees and the Ohio State University Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity. He enjoyed wintering in Mexico. Sweet and kind, his words were few and never harsh.
He was an exuberant dancer. He was a doting grandfather with a great sense of humor. Through the years he remained positive, in spite of losing his battle with Parkinson's. His family expressed it best, "He was wonderful."
Those left to cherish his memory include his beloved wife Shirley, daughters Tari (Greg) Anderson of Cincinnati, Sherry Clark of Stratford, five treasured grandchildren: Sam, Paige, and Grant Anderson, Ceci and Cozy Clark, brother Victor (Gina) Smith of Sugar Grove, as well as a host of friends including Rene Rupp.
Friends may call 3-5 p.m. Friday at the Snyder-Rodman Funeral Center, 1510 W. William St. at Valleyside Drive, Delaware, where services will follow at 5 p.m., with Rev. John Hart officiating. A reception will immediately follow the services in the Snyder-Rodman Community Room. Graveside services will be held Saturday 10 a.m. in Oak Grove Cemetery.
Memorial contributions can be made to Smile Train, P.O. 96231, Washington, D.C., 20090-6231.
Condolences may be expressed at www.snyderfuneralhomes.com.