Friday, May 22, 2009

Donald Charles "Don" Smith: Pegged out...

From Mansfield News Journal:

MANSFIELD: Long before claiming the title "Renaissance Man" was in vogue, Donald Charles Smith began living the title. Remarkably blessed with musical talent, Don played the piano by ear ~ never limited to notes on the printed score. After hearing a song just once, Don was able to play the tune, which made him a sought-after party guest and sing-a-long accompanist.

His earthly fingers are now still, as Don passed away Wednesday morning May 20, 2009 in Liberty Nursing Center.

He was born June 22, 1923 in Mansfield to William and Blanche (Sherman) Smith, and was graduated from St. Peter's High School in 1941.

For 11 years he worked in the vitreous plant at the Westinghouse Company, and retired from the General Motors stamping plant with 25 years of service in Quality Control. At his retirement, Don was secretary of Quality Control.

A lifelong member of St. Peter's Catholic Church, Don sang in the church choir and was a member of Knights of Columbus.

His love for the arts provided rewarding hobbies~ for 60 years he worked as a piano tuner, and enjoyed attending live theater events of plays and musicals.

For years, he and his "best golfing buddy" Elery Carpenter, played the local links.

Fluent in languages of both French, and the archaic Latin, Don was a bit of a wordsmith. For special occasions he would write speeches and stories, crafting the puns and storylines with his wonderful mixture of humor. A natural at the board game Scrabble®, Don taught all of his grandchildren his favorite card game: Cribbage.

He is survived by his wife, Dolores M. (O'Bryan) Smith, whom he married April 3, 1951; his son, Gregory Smith of Springfield; daughters and sons-in-law, Regina & Ray Burkhalter of Shelby, Sharon & Bill Russell of Mansfield and Cindy & Dave Eilenfeld of Lucas; grandchildren, David & Kaylee Smith, Megan Smith and Aaron Smith, Don Johnson, Dan Johnson, Tim Johnson, Jimmy & Stephanie Johnson, Marcie & Mike Annis and Philip Johnson, Zachary Russell, Nathan Russell and Emily Russell, Jacob Eilenfeld, Jessica Eilenfeld, Andrea Eilenfeld and Ben Eilenfeld; step grandchildren, Blake Burkhalter and Craig Burkhalter; six great grandchildren; and nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by grandchildren, Paul Burkhalter, Sarah Eilenfeld, Jedediah Eilenfeld and Samuel Eilenfeld; as well as brothers, Robert Smith and Paul Smith; and his sister, Mary Urschel.

The Smith Family will receive friends Friday, May 22, 2009 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Finefrock Chapel of the Marion Avenue Snyder Funeral Home, where a vigil service will be held at 7 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be offered Saturday at 10 a.m. in St. Peter's Catholic Church, celebrated by the Rev. Father Tony Borgia. Burial will follow in Mansfield Catholic Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of the donor's choice.

Those unable to attend may wish to send a condolence to the Smith Family online, by visiting:


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