Reunited with his beloved wife Elaine and welcomed into the arms of Jesus on Saturday, March 12, 2022, at the age of 94 years. Born on July 16, 1927 in Eagle River, WI to Earl and Winifred (nee Firstel) Smith. Donald later attended high school in Midland, MI. Upon graduation, he enlisted in the army and served his country, receiving a World War II victory medal. Donald relocated to Milwaukee, WI where he met the love of his life; marrying Elaine M Engelking on January 13, 1951. He retired from the Milwaukee Journal Company and enjoyed spending more time on the golf course, travelling by motor home with Elaine to visit State and National Parks across the country, wintering at Bentsen Grove in Mission, TX and attending his grandchildren’s various sporting events whenever possible.
Don was a man of great faith and integrity. Despite life-long physical challenges bestowed upon him from contracting the polio virus, post service in the Korean war, Don never wavered in his faith, his work ethic or commitment to his wife and children. He loved his wife Elaine, his best friend and life-long partner, with great passion, commitment, and dedication. He encouraged each of his children to work hard and strive to be the best versions of themselves they could be. If they did, good things were bound to happen. He would be there to love and support them each step of the way. There is no question that each member of Don’s family; kids, grand-children and great grand-children will carry forth his legacy and treasure the special relationship each one of them developed and shared with this special man.
Family, friends, neighbors, work associates and acquaintances will remember Don for who he was. A man of great character. Someone you just enjoyed being around, talking with. Quick to lend a helping hand, a laugh or smile to lighten a moment, or even just a solid hand shake or hug to let you know he was there for you.
As a family, we loved, laughed, cried, and prayed with Donald right up to the very last moment of his life. He was not alone. And as we watched him slowly leave us, his spirit raising up to eternal life in heaven with our Lord, Jesus Christ, we mourned at the forever loss of his physical presence in our lives. But we were also very appreciative and took great comfort in knowing that he was once again reunited with his lovely wife Elaine and will forever be at peace.
Donald Smith, you had a wonderful, enchanting, 94 year life long journey. We are all very grateful that you brought each one of us along to share a little part of your ride.
Extra special love and thanks to Donald’s Grand Daughter, Taylor Rae. Taylor has been intimately involved in the day-to-day care of Donald, and previously, his wife Elaine, since they first became residents of assisted living facilities several years ago. She has been a God send to the family, helping to manage Grandpa and Grandma’s care, as well as communicating back to the family members regarding any and all concerns that needed to be addressed. Along the way, she developed a special, unique, loving relationship with each one of them. Her commitment, compassion, and love for them was a comforting light in their daily lives.
Donald was a loving father to Mark (Sharon), Paul (Debbie), Brian (Shelly-Rae) Smith and Sharon (Mike) Hipp. Dearest grandfather of Kyle (Ellie), Carly (Dylan) Turner, Kailyn (Jake) Garro, Jordan, Stephanie (Warren) Kadden, Westin (Rebekah), Taylor Rae, Teagan Hipp and Jace Hipp. Great-grandfather to Xandra (Dan) and their children Beckett and Lennon), Novi, Ava, Easton, Macie, Henry, Charlie, Parker and Preston. Further survived by other relatives, friends and his brother Maynard.
Donald was preceded in death by his wife Elaine in 2019, parents; brothers, Charles, William, Francis and Eugene; and sisters, Dorothy Renk, Bruneta Smith, Gladys Radcliffe and Geraldine Waeghe.
Thank you so much to all of Donald’s loving caregivers at Clement Manor, and the wonderful folks from Heartland Hospice. We are forever grateful for your care, and friendship to Donald.
Services for Donald will be on Saturday, April 9th, 2022, at St Charles Catholic Church, 313 Circle Drive, Hartland WI. Visitation will be held from 10:00am until 11:00am, followed by a mass of Christian burial. A light lunch will be held in the Borromeo room immediately following mass.
In lieu of flowers, donations will be given to the Clement Manor activities department to provide a Packers tailgate party for the residents in Fall 2022.
We all love you more!!