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Gary L. Smith “Smitty”

Visitation Info: Private Visitation
Interment Info: Forest Lawn Memorial Park
Obituary
Visitation
Interment
Condolences

Gary Lee Smith “Smitty”, 64 of Erlanger, passed away unexpectedly Tuesday, July 14, 2020. Gary loved hunting, fishing, and all things outdoors; but his greatest joy was being Poppy to his beloved grandson Jacob. He loved spending time with him, driving him to school and practices, and watching him play sports. He also cherished the times he spent outdoors with his son Ian, training him on the proper way to do yardwork, fishing, and scoping out the best hunting spots. Gary and his daughter Stephanie enjoyed beating everyone at Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy, and just being all around perfect. He loved that his daughter Hillary is just as stubborn and strong-willed as he was. She was his most formidable opponent, which made their bond unbreakable. Gary loved his wife Debbie fiercely, and did everything for her. He pushed her when he needed to, but all she had to do was look at him and say “Gary…” in her special way and he took over. He loved to tell the story about how he took her out on a dangerous ledge in the Smoky Mountains on their honeymoon and scared her to death, but she never doubted that he would protect her. Everyone knew that Smitty loved Debbie, and their 42 years of marriage were the happiest times of their lives.

Gary was a devoted husband, loving father, and loyal friend. He led by example with his strength, courage, and strong work ethic. He was a hard worker who never stopped until the job was done; and then he would find something else that needed to be done and do that too. He worked hard to make sure his family had everything they ever needed. Gary was a stoic man, but a softie deep down. He never forgot birthdays or special occasions, and never failed to bring flowers to his wife, mother, and daughters.

He is survived by the love of his life and wife of 42 years, Debbie; children, Stephanie (Rick) Ballard, Ian Smith, and Hillary Smith; grandson, Jacob Bock; mother, Wilma Smith; sisters, Marilyn (Pat) Helmer and Denise Smith; and many in-laws, nieces, nephews, loving friends and family too numerous to list, but not forgotten. Gary was preceded in death by his father, Denver Smith.

Anyone who knew Gary knows he liked to do things his own way. He always told his family he didn’t want a funeral, he just wanted them to “roll him in a ditch” and have a party, so that’s what they’re going to do. A private graveside service will be held at Forest Lawn Memorial Park. Memorials can be made to The United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation at 8085 Saltsburg Rd. Suite 201 Pittsburgh, PA 15239 or to Donate Life America at 701 East Byrd Street, 16th Floor, Richmond, VA 23219. The family encourages others to consider being an organ donor like Gary, who continued to help others in death just as he did in life. In honor of Gary, get outside. Spend time fishing, mowing the lawn, washing your car, accidentally dragging your family on a “short” five-mile hike in 90 degree heat with no water, or driving down long winding back roads with the windows down and no a/c looking for deer. Just be sure to do it all before noon, because “morning is the best time of the day.” Online condolences may be left at www.LinnemannFuneralHomes.com

Thursday
1
January
12:00 am - 12:00 am

Private Visitation


,
Thursday
1
January
12:00 am

Gary L. Smith “Smitty”


,

Forest Lawn Memorial Park

Address: 3227 Dixie Hwy ERLANGER, KY 41018
Thursday
1
January
12:00 am - 12:00 am

Gary L. Smith “Smitty”


,

My deepest condolences

I played basketball with Gary. He was always upbeat and positive. I’m so sorry to hear of his passing.

Tim Cody


Deepest Sympathy to the Smith Family

Dear Wilma & Family,
I offer my deepest sympathy to you and your family at this most difficult time.
I will keep you and your family in my nightly prayers.
It is the most difficult life changing event to lose your child, Wilma,I been there,I know your pain and sadness.
I remember Gary as a little skinny boy ,living next door to us on Patricia St. Watching him grow up as a tall,tall young man!!
Wilma and family my heart aches for you-all at this sad time.
With Deepest Sympathy,
Judy McGee Biedenharn
Your next door neighbor.


In our thoughts

Hillary, never knew your father, but I am sure you are a mirror image. My heart goes out to you and your family at this time. You are in my prayers as your soul heals. He is watching over you and will always be there to guide you through life.


Lucky to be blessed with a second Dad whom I will miss dearly.

When i married the love of my life I gained a wonderful family in the package. My dad got called home in 2010 so I was thrilled God gifted me with a replacement the likes of Gary Smith. He was one hell of a man and one tough s.o.b as well. I loved and respected him as he was my own father and I will miss him dearly. Heaven gained one of the best, and i assure you there won’t be any angels slacking on his watch. I love you Gary, I’ll watch after the family as long as I’m here on earth. ❤️


We had a lot of fun together. I will miss you

I met Smitty about 1970 when I moved to Florence . He lived only a few blocks away . All of us kids played baseball in an open field off Manderlay Dr . Later Smitty & I played summer baseball, HS Baseball & Travel Softball. He always was up for an adventure. We would take day or weekend trips to many places . One we traveled to a lot was The Smokey Mountains. We got into a little trouble here & there but nothing serious . He always had a smile on his face . Was one of the hardest working people I ever knew . This was apparent when we worked at Tate Builders Supply . I working in the office in the A/C . He worked in the yard unloading & loading trucks & rail cars . Some of those Kentucky days it was crazy HOT . He would stop into the office VERY occasionally to cool off . Always with a smile NEVER complained . NEVER . He would work late or early if needed . Gary always had your back . You could always trust him & his word . The kind of friend you wanted to be around . Although we played baseball together, he really excelled at Basketball . I could hold my own in baseball , however when it came to Basketball he kicked my butt & many others much older than himself. I knew he and Debbie when they first met . All I can tell you is that they were made for each other . He adored her from day #1. The reason I knew , I saw a little less of him , and when I did Debbie was sitting next to him in one of the many nice cars he drove . I was extremely happy for them . I lost contact for many years , because I moved 300 miles away We reconnected at my fathers funeral . It was like old times . Nothing had changed. We laughed and talked about old times . Nothing was awkward. I think that is what it’s all about when you have a good friend & relationship.
I am blessed and honored to call him a TRUE friend . I will remember him, our times together, the adventures and the things he taught me . GOD Bless my friend