Charles Earl Smith, 88, of Buena Vista, CO, passed away peacefully April 01, 2021 at the Bruce McCandless Veterans Community Living Center. Charles (Charlie/Chuck) was born May 25, 1932 in Salida, CO to Earl Smith and Bertha Cooper Smith.
Charlie grew up in Cimarron, Dillion and Buena Vista where he later graduated from Buena Vista High School. Upon graduation, he left and served in the Unites States Air Force flying as a Tail Gunner on the B-36 at the end of the Korean War. While in the Air Force, Charlie spent a lot of time in Thule, Greenland. Once back in Buena Vista, he married Helen Marie Smith on July 16, 1956 in Taos, N.M. Charlie and Helen made Buena Vista their home and together had four children, three daughters, Cindy, Shari and Terrie Grace; and a son, Stan.
Charlie worked at Climax for a number of years and then later went to work for the Colorado Department of Transportation where he retired after 31 years. He was an active church member where he served on the board both at First Baptist Church and Mountain Heights Southern Baptist Church. He loved helping serve in any capacity that he could within the church, where often times you could find him fixing anything that needed to be fixed or helping cook or clean up for the weekly Wednesday night dinners.
He loved hunting, fishing, tying flies for fishing, going on jeep rides and leading jeep tours so that others could experience and see the mountains that he loved so much. He loved spending time with his family and his grandkids, and was one of those special people that if you needed anything, you knew who to call, and he would be there.
Charlie is survived by his brother Jack (Linda) Smith of Grand Junction, CO, Cassie Hackney (Clyde) of Grand Junction, CO; his son Stan (Karen) Smith of Buena Vista, CO; two daughters, Cindy Smith of Buena Vista, CO, Shari (Reggie) Mcneill of Buena Vista, CO; five grandsons, Marcus (Lacee) Trusty, Jared Trusty, Jeremy Snyder, Kevin Snyder and Spencer Smith; five granddaughters, Natalie Trusty, Rychelle (Aaron) Foltz, Gabby (Chad) Prytula, Tessa (Beau) Brantley and Arielle (Josh) Saar; and 14 great grandchildren.
In addition to his parents and his wife, he was preceded in death by a daughter, Terrie Grace and a sister, Marie Pryor.
A celebration of life will be determined for a later date in 2021.
Arrangements were with Lewis and Glenn Funeral Home.