Smith, Claude Leroy (Red)
passed away December 3, 2008 in Mesa, Arizona. He was born August 14, 1925 to Claude Ellis and Clara May (Ostrand) Smith in Oconto, Nebraska. Red attended Broken Bow High School and latter Kearney Radio School. In March 1943 he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and was stationed at the Great Lakes Navel Station in Chicago. Later during the Second World War he served as a Radio Specialist in the Solomon Islands. After his return home, on leave, he met Wilma Eilene Gartrell of Dickens, Nebraska. They were married on November 18, 1945. The couple made their first home in Dickens Nebraska and later moved to Imperial, Nebraska before settling in North Platte Nebraska. There Mr. Smith was employed by Sears and later owned and operated Red's TV and Appliance Repair. In 1962 Red, Wilma and their three children relocated to Mesa, Arizona where he began working for Goodyear Aerospace/ Loral of Litchfield Park until his retirement in 1968. He was preceded in death by his parents, a baby sister, and his son Larry Smith. He is survived by his wife of 63 years Wilma, his daughter JoAnn Smith Raupp (Harvey) of Mesa, son Rick Smith (Jill Forbes) of Phoenix, Grandchildren Troy Smith of Phoenix, Jennifer Smith Caines (Andrew) and Tim Smith both of Snowflake, and Tauni Raupp of Mesa, Step Grandchildren Vanessa Powers Sorabella (Louis) of Mesa, Amanda Powers of Snowflake, and Henry (Hank) Powers of Michigan and 10 Great Grandchildren. Mr. Smith was a kind, loving and generous person who was much beloved by his family and friends. He enjoyed camping, fishing and gardening. Thanks to the kindness of Hospice of Arizona, and Odyssey Health Care. Services include a viewing to be held Monday December 8th from 5-8 PM at the Sonoran Skies Mortuary, 5650 E. Main St. Mesa AZ. Funeral Services on Tuesday December 9, 2008 at 10: 00 AM at the1st United Methodist Church, 15 E. 1st Ave. Mesa Arizona 85210.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Dec. 7, 2008.