|Birth: ||Aug. 27, 1904|
|Death: ||Jul. 14, 1977|
~~My heartfelt gratitude to Michael for sponsoring my father's memorial~~
Will Couts Smith, Jr., my dad, was born in Springfield, Tennessee on the 27th of August, 1904. He was the second child, after older sister Leland (Woodard), of Will Couts Smith and Jennie L England. He also had a younger sister, Mary Florence (Browder), and a younger brother, Joe Harry.
In 1922 my dad married for the first time, a local girl named Eunice Harris. Within a year, Will Smith, III was born, but sadly died soon after. But in 1926, my beautiful red-haired half sister, Linda, was born! Daddy worked with his father in the family store, which was a kind of general store and supply. Unfortunately for Linda (but fortunately for my mother, my sister, and me!) the marriage to Eunice didn't work out and they were divorced in the mid-1930s.
The Depression was in full swing and Daddy decided to leave Springfield and head to the big city of Chicago. It was there that he met my mother – a Swedish beauty straight off the Wisconsin farm - in the mid 1940s. It was a May-December love affair, she being only 22, and he almost 40, but what a love affair it was! I won't make you blush with the details, but not long after the War ended, they married and moved to Davie, Florida… a very small town west of Ft. Lauderdale… where my dad opened a hardware store. It was there my sister and I were born and grew up in the 1950s and 60s. For me, childhood was idyllic.
My dad was almost 50 when I was born and I lost him when I was 22. I'm not honestly sure he was up to raising two more daughters, but he loved my mom and whatever mama wanted (if it was at all within his power to give) mama got! So two daughters it was. And he gave us all he had! There are two things overall I think of when I remember my dad. First was that he was a Southern Gentleman in the old-school sense of the word. He treated my mother, my sister, and me like royalty. I believe to this day that a young woman's self-esteem is largely established by how she is treated by her father. I grew up knowing I was special and wonderful for no other reason than my Daddy loved me! The second thing I think of are the stories! This too, was a result of his southern heritage. The man could tell stories! To this day, I'm not sure which ones were true and which ones were tall tales - but I loved them all.
We all have our weaknesses and our personal demons and as we become adults we begin to realize that our parents do too. I'm sure my father did. But I did not see them. To me he was perfect and a part of me has been with him since he left. I have often heard it said that we develop a healthy or unhealthy image of God based on our relationship with our earthly father. I don't know if that's true, but if it is, it explains a lot for me.
Will Couts Smith (1873 - 1933)
Leland Virginia England Smith (1877 - 1948)
Marjorie Louise Johnson Smith (1922 - 2015)
Will Couts Smith (1923 - 1923)*
Linda Smith Hayes (1926 - 2016)*
Leland Virginia Smith Woodard (1900 - 1985)*
Will Couts Smith (1904 - 1977)
Forest Lawn Memorial Gardens South
Created by: Billie
Record added: Apr 01, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 35413226