Smith, Richard C. "Dick"
SALINE, Mich. - Richard C. Smith, formerly of Naperville, Ill., passed away Dec. 10, 2020, in Saline, Mich.
Born to Charles and Lucille (Jerred) Smith on Nov. 26, 1922, in Pardeeville, Wis., Dick was one of eight children.
He graduated from Pardeeville High School in 1940 where he excelled in athletics. His love for sports and the influence of his coaches and teachers inspired Dick to become an educator and a coach himself, a role in which he could make a difference in the lives of young athletes. He graduated from North Central College (NCC) in Naperville, Ill., with a degree in education. At NCC he lettered in football, basketball and baseball. He completed a Master of Science in education from Northern Illinois University in 1960. In 2005 Dick was inducted into the North Central College Athletic Hall of Fame and was named "one of the best athletes in the history of the school." (See the following link for details www.ochalekstark.com).
While in college, following the attack on Pearl Harbor, Dick enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps where he piloted the C46 and C47 aircraft. Upon resuming his education, Dick remained a USAF Reservist in the Korean War, piloting the C119 Boxcar Aircraft, and ultimately retired with the rank of MAJ Richard Smith USAF (Ret).
Dick graduated from NCC in 1948 and began what would become a 35-year career of teaching and coaching at Naperville Community/Central High School. Respected and loved by his colleagues and students alike, his accomplishments in the classroom and on the field were unmatched. Dick was inducted into the NCHS Athletic Hall of Fame in 2013. His success also led him to become a three-time inductee into the Illinois High School Hall of Fame for coaching football and baseball, along with officiating basketball.
On April 14, 1944, he married Gladys Rhodes Nelson, who preceded him in death in 1990.
In 1991 he married Barbara Bradshaw. They enjoyed years of travelling before settling in Milan, Mich., in 2005, where he continued to stay active.
Dick is survived by his wife, Barbara; sister, Jeanette Sloggett (Rad); children, Richard Smith Jr. (Anna), Linda Collins, David Smith (Toni) and Jay Smith (Allison); grandchildren, Brett Smith (Mandy), Nicole Smith, Andrea Collins, Michael Collins, Danielle King (Joshua), Rhodes Smith and Lillian Smith; great-grandchildren, Kendall and Addison Smith; along with Barbara's children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by his parents; and siblings, Harry Smith, James Smith, Charlotte Hunt, Eleanor Miller, Marilyn Amend and Helen McCormick.
At Dick's request, memorial contributions may be directed to the North Central College Athletic Department.
A memorial service will be held at a later date, with interment at Naperville Cemetery, Naperville, Ill.
Arrangements by Ochalek-Stark Funeral, www.ochalekstark.com/
OCHALEK-STARK FUNERAL SERVICE, P.C.
218 E. MAIN STREET
MILAN, MI 48160
Phone: (734) 439-1100
Fax: (734) 439-2245