Obituary of Howard Smith
Howard Smith was born on February 14, 1935, at Chickasha, Oklahoma,
to Dan & Lena Smith. He was the 4th. child in a family of twelve children. He
was called to his reward on May 4, 2018, as a result of a heart attack, reaching the
age of 83.
At the age of two, he moved with his family to DeRidder, Louisiana.
The family's occupation was dairy farming. We remember him talking about
milking six cows in the morning, before walking the five miles, barefoot, to the
bus stop, for school. He received his education in the DeRidder community.
On June 4, 1945, Dad was baptized into the Church of God in Christ,
Mennonite, by Hiram Mininger. We remember our dad as a man of faith. He truly
believed in the saving blood of Jesus. He was faithful to his vows, and looked
forward to his heavenly home.
Dad spent two years in New Orleans, working in a hospital for his 1-W
service, during the Korean war. As a family, we would occasionally go to New
Orleans for a short vacation.
Dad married our mother, Iris Kahn, on July 14, 1957. They were married
almost 61 years. There was one son and four daughters born to this union.
Dad's first job consisted of bagging groceries at the local Piggly Wiggly
store. Eventually, he became the produce manager. Later, he worked in the air
conditioning and refrigeration business. At one time, they had a bakery, and then
Dad bought the car wash, which was next door. He owned, and managed car
washes until his retirement.
A highlight in his life was the time they spent in Birmingham, Alabama,
being houseparents at a boys unit for two years. They stayed for seven more years
being involved in the tract ministry. He loved the tract and prison ministry. The
song "It Must Be Told" became very impressive to him during this time.
He was also a lover of song, which resulted in being a song leader for
many years, and teaching music to school children. In his later years, he would
often pray, and sometimes sing in his sleep. Our parents often organized singing
groups to go sing for the elderly, and to share the message of hope. Our Dad
loved to garden, and went on many fishing trips.
In 2012, our parents moved to the Westpoint, Mississippi area to be
closer to family. In 2016, due to health reasons, they moved to Flowers Manor, at
Clarksdale, Mississippi. Our dad resided there until his death.
Those left to cherish fond memories are: his wife, Iris, one son, Bruce
and Twila Smith, Tutwiler, Mississippi, four daughters, Sherry and Randy Unruh,
Lime Springs, Iowa, Gaylene and Clint Koehn, El Campo, Texas, Cindy and
Marlin Jantz, Liberty, Kentucky, Starla and Warren Schmidt, Clarksdale,
Mississippi, special friend, Stacy Decker, Moss Bluff, Louisiana, eighteen
grandchildren, and eighteen great-grandchildren, four brothers, Jim Smith,
Bloomfield, Iowa, Benton and Eva Smith, Walker, Missouri, Chester and Joy
Smith, DeRidder, Louisiana, Dan Jr. Smith, DeRidder, Louisiana, two sisters,
Bertha Koehn, Goessel, Kansas, Luana Issac, Burns, Kansas, two brothers-in-law,
Vernon Koehn, Burns, Kansas, Harry and Donna Classen, DeRidder, Louisiana,
one sister-in-law, Francis Smith, and many nieces and nephews. Preceding him in
death are: his parents, parents-in-law, one brother, four sisters, two brothers-in-law,
one sister-in-law, and one great grandson.
Funeral Services are Tuesday, May 8, 2018, 2:30 pm at Clarksdale Mennonite Church with burial at adjoining Cemetery. Visitation is Monday May 7, 2018 6-8pm at Clarksdale Mennonite Church. Meredith-Nowell Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.