Cover photo for Jerry "Gary" Lee Smith's Obituary
Jerry "Gary" Lee Smith Profile Photo
1935 Jerry "gary" 2020

Jerry "Gary" Lee Smith

October 9, 1935 — November 4, 2020

Jerry Lee Smith was born October 9, 1935 to George Matthew Smith and Opal Marie (Taylor) Smith at Ainsworth, NE. surrounded by family who worked the ranch his grandfather homesteaded.  He passed away Wednesday, November 4, 2020 at Lakeside Medical Center in Pine City, MN at the age of 85. One of six siblings, Jerry's eldest brothers preceded him in death, Max and Bernard Smith; and two sisters-in-law, Shizu Smith and Doris Smith.  Surviving family include brothers Patrick Smith of Long Prairie, MN, James (Sherry) Smith of Vermillion, SD, Michael (Sheila) Smith of Springfield, MO; sister Darlene (Eugene) Biever of Pine City; and many very special nieces and nephews. 

Jerry started school in Centerville, SD. where he made his first communion.  In 1946, he moved with his family to Huron, SD and attended St. Theresa School; serving as altar server for St. Martin’s Church through the ninth grade. He graduated from Huron Senior High School with the class of 1953.  He started "paying his own way in seventh grade" by investing in a bicycle and peddling papers.  This was the start of a life of saving and donating to many good causes as an adult. Jerry loved games; he was often found kneeling on the ground in a circle of friends drawing a bag of marbles from his pocket or joining with neighborhood friends for a game of basketball, baseball, tennis or golf.  

After serving in the U.S. Army from 1955 to 1957 he started his lifelong career with U.S. Department of the Interior and completed thirty years of faithful service as surveyor and construction inspector for the Bureau of Reclamation.  The beautiful scenery in states of Utah, Idaho, and Nevada developed his love for motorcycling and picture taking. He built a house near Vernal, Utah, while dedicating many volunteer hours to his Catholic parish and Knights of Columbus organization. 

Jerry loved caregiving for his elderly parents who made him a dependable driver.  His brothers also kept him busy with extra jobs.  Jerry enjoyed spending holidays and family vacations/reunions at lakes in Minnesota and winters in Arizona.  In 1990, he made the decision to move in with his sister and brother-in-law in Pine City.

Jerry had a great love for helping people by giving them rides.  Even though he never married, the pretty girl always put a twinkle in his eye.  Jerry was happy to participate in a noisier and more active family lifestyle and to be supported in his faith by the Immaculate Conception Church, the Knights of Columbus, the Sunday Night Prayer Group, choir, Koinonia retreats and all who work and reside in this wonderful Pine City community.

He was a connoisseur of food as long as it was steak, mash potatoes and gravy and corn.  He loved to play golf with his friends and many weeks played at least 5 rounds of golf.  He will greatly be missed by all who came to know him.

Monsignor Aleksander Suchan will celebrate a Mass of Christian burial for Jerry: 10:30 AM; Friday, November 13, 2020 at the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, Pine City.

The burial/interment will take place in the East Park Cemetery in Ainsworth Nebraska; 4 PM; Saturday (11/14).

God bless the heroic caregivers, nurses and hospice at Lakeside!

Memorials in Jerry's memory may be designated to: A Place For You in Pine City, MN. or to Knights of Columbus at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Pine City, MN.

Funeral arrangements are entrusted to: Funeral and Cremation Service of Pine City ~ Swanson Chapel.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Jerry "Gary" Lee Smith, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Mass of Christian Burial

Friday, November 13, 2020

Starts at 10:30 am (Central time)

Immaculate Conception Catholic Church

535 8th St SW, Pine City, MN 55063

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