Dr. William D. Smith was born in Chicago to Carl and Libuse (Kolar) Smith. He was followed by siblings Gail and Charles. He graduated from Calumet High School; earned his Bachelor's degree at Western Michigan Teachers College (WMU); and earned his Master's degree in education at University of Michigan. He served in the Army in the Korean War in the Army Corps of Engineers.
He began teaching at Lane School in Alsip. He became a Principal and later served as Superintendent at District 126. Bill also was an adjunct college professor at multiple colleges. Bill and Rita Bialecke were married in 1960. They welcomed twin daughters Kristy and Kathie into their home and later moved to Oak Lawn where daughter Lisa joined the family.
In 1976, Bill ran his first open all ages spelling bee in Oak Lawn. After moving to Orland Park, he began 40 years of Orland Park spelling bees.
Bill loved sharing his knowledge of geography and history, taking his family on vacations. Bill continued exploring in retirement, adding the grandkids to the adventures. He and Marge Doody enjoyed many wonderful times. For the past 20 years, Bill was blest by a special relationship with Virginia Kwiatkowski. They kept each other active and young at heart.
Bill was preceded in death by daughter Denise Smith, son Douglas D. Smith, father Carl Smith, wife Rita B. Smith, mother Libuse Smith, siblings Gail Smith and Charles Smith. He is survived by daughters Kristine Freeman, Kathleen Sullivan (Bruce) and Lisa M. Smith; by grandchildren Michalene Albert (Joseph), William De Young, Jacob Freeman (Sara Huebschen), Tina Van Naarden (James), and Elizabeth Sullivan; by great-grandchildren Alexis De Young and Simone Albert.
Limited capacity visitation on Friday November 27, at Blake-Lamb Funeral Home, 4727 W. 103rd St. Oak Lawn, IL (708) 636-1193 (masks required). Family-only funeral on Saturday November 28 with Zoom participation available (call Blake-Lamb for details). In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Presbyterian Church in Orland Park Rita Smith Memorial Fund.
In consideration of the safety of our guests and associates, Blake-Lamb Funeral Home will adhere to the current gathering restrictions in the state of Illinois, which allow 10 or fewer guests at services. Proper social distancing must be practiced and all guests will be required to wear face masks at all times. Thank you for your cooperation.
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Published by Chicago Tribune on Nov. 25, 2020.