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(News article) Robert F. Smith, 87, a dentist whose care inspired the loyalty of patients, died Saturday in St. Luke's Hospital, Maumee. He had heart disease, his daughter, Dr. Carolyn Gbur, said. The West Toledo dentist opened his own general practice in 1963. When he retired nearly 43 years later, original patients were still returning for regular visits, as were their children and grandchildren. "A lot of them seemed more like friends than clients," said his daughter, a cardiologist. She and her husband, Dr. Charles Gbur, are in a small group practice with an ethos she says is much like her father's: "Take care of patients like we and our family would want to be taken care of," she said. "That's the way he was with his patients." The dentist's wife was his receptionist and, at his side as assistant, saw the care he took. "He loved what he did, and it had to be perfect - a crown a denture, even a filling, it had to be just so," his wife, Mary, said. Robert Francis Smith was born Feb. 28, 1927, in San Francisco to Esther and Harold Smith. He grew up in Detroit and was a graduate of the former St. Theresa High School. With World War II ongoing, he enlisted in the Coast Guard his senior year and served for two years. Then he got a bachelor's degree in business administration at the University of Detroit. He became an assistant office manager at the Libbey-Owens-Ford Co. glass plant in Rossford, but left the corporate world for dental school at Ohio State University. He started in 1960 with the Reynolds Corners practice of dentist Leo Cunningham. "He seemed really happy with what he was doing in his life. He liked helping people," his daughter said. He'd been a sailor since his youth and liked to fish, especially on Tampa Bay with brother-in-law John Cannon and nephews John Paul and Rob Cannon. Surviving are his wife, Mary, whom he married June 23, 1956; daughter, Dr. Carolyn Gbur; sister, Florence Dunn, and four grandchildren. Visitation is from 2-8 p.m. today in the Ansberg-West Funeral Home, with a prayer service at 7 p.m. Services are at 11 a.m. Friday in Christ The King Catholic Church, where he was an active member. The family suggests tributes to the Michael Anthony Gbur Scholarship Fund, named for a late grandson and intended for prospective St. John's Jesuit High School students from South Toledo, or the American Heart Association. Contact Blade Staff Writer Mark Zaborney at: mzaborney@theblade.com "> mzaborney@theblade.com or 419-724-6182.
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