SMITH—Jack Smith died at home in Florence, Ore., on Jan. 15, 2021, after a long-fought battle with congestive heart failure.
He was born in Little Rock, Ark., but the Oregon coast was his home.
He was a graduate of Siuslaw High in 1961, where he stirred up a little trouble, lettered in football and track, and made lifelong friends.
Jack’s career was spent mostly in the woods as a hook tender, but he had also fought historic forest fires, been a U.S. Forest Service crew leader, and a Safety Inspector for Oregon Worker’s Compensation Department.
He was especially proud of his work as an employment specialist for the Oregon Employment Department, matching hard workers to good jobs or sorting out their unemployment benefits.
Jack, a man of the woods was not light-hearted or an easy guy to know. He was as tough as calk boots. He was not a man to be crossed, but he was also a fiercely loyal friend.
He had experienced much in his life, which made for good storytelling and he did that well, re-living the moments as he retold them. The ending of his final chapter was just that death won, fair and square.
Until his health prevented it, Jack spent his life in nature, either working, hunting or hiking with Shirley, his wife of 60-years. There were few things he enjoyed more than admiring a herd of elk, happening upon a field of wild tiger lilies or just being in the stillness of nature, where the discord of the world was silenced.
Jack was preceded in death by his parents Sealy Smith and Carl Smith, and his mother-in-law he liked to call, “GM”- Velma Easling, and his canine friends Token and Cody. He is survived by his wife Shirley who stuck by him through thick and thin, his children Jack jr., (Katrina), Joni (Dan), and Jason (Alicia), his grandchildren, and his great-grandchildren.
At his request, there will be no services and his ashes will be freed in the places he found most special.