Bethany, MO: Harold Dee Smith, who always sought to leave a place in better condition than he found it, passed away Saturday, August 5, 2017 in Bethany, Missouri, having made the world around him better in small but innumerable ways. He was born to Hanford and Beulah (Spaulding) Smith on a soggy March 15, 88 years ago, at the home of his maternal grandparents north of Blythedale, Missouri. He lived with his parents and two younger brothers, Garold and Royce, on a farm seven miles west of Eagleville. He was baptized at an early age and became a lifelong member of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).
After graduating from Eagleville High School in 1947, Harold began teaching at Eureka, a one-room school house near what is now the Harrison County Lake. He earned $125 a month and walked three miles each way to his job, though there is no evidence the route was uphill both ways.
During summers and some winter breaks, Harold began attending Northwest Missouri State in Maryville, Missouri. After serving in the Army, reaching the rank of Staff Sergeant, Harold finished his undergraduate degree with the help of the G.I. Bill and the support of his new wife, the former Joyce Brown (whom he had gotten to know during a college trip to Niagara Falls). He would later earn his master’s degree in Greeley, Colorado.
Harold served many schools in north Missouri and central Iowa including Stanberry, Albany, Westboro, Nodaway-Holt and United Community School in Jordan, Iowa, first as a teacher, then as a principal, and finally as a superintendent. He finished his education career by “going home” to serve 19 years as superintendent of the North Harrison School District in Eagleville.
Following retirement, Harold and Joyce moved to Blythedale, Missouri, where he devoted more time to his love of farming, domestic and international travel with Joyce, and spending time with family. Harold also carved out time to “loaf” at various reputable establishments around Harrison County, including the feed store in Eagleville. Harold did not like to pontificate. He took to heart the adage that it is “better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.” He would be the first to say he was a flawed human being. But he was a man of deep wisdom, integrity, and generosity.
Harold’s passing leaves a hole in the hearts of his loved ones, who will move forward a little sadder, though bolstered by his love and pride in them. Harold is survived by Joyce, his loving wife and best friend of 62 years, his brothers, Garold (Velda) and Royce of Eagleville; his children, Jeff (Gina), Maryville, MO; Ron (Michele), Louisville, Kentucky, Julie (Gary) Lupfer, McFall, MO and Robert (Alesha), Maysville, MO. Harold is also survived by his grandchildren, Jared (Amanda) Lupfer, McFall, MO, Tyler Lupfer, Maryville, MO, Isabel Smith, Cincinnati, OH, Sophia Smith, Louisville, KY and Zane, Sadie and Lainey Smith all of Maysville, MO. Harold is additionally survived by his first great grandchild, Alison Lupfer of McFall, who will not remember him, but will carry part of his soul in hers.
Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, August 12, at Roberson Funeral Home, Eagleville, MO. Burial will follow in the Cedar Hill Cemetery, Blythedale, MO. The family will receive friends from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. Saturday at the funeral home where friends may call after 9:00 a.m. Saturday. Memorial contributions may be made to the Harrison County Hospice in care of Roberson Funeral Home, P.O. Box 46, Eagleville, MO 64442. Online condolences may be left at www.robersonfuneralhome.com.