Vail Daily obituary: George K. Smith, 1936-2014 |

Vail Daily obituary: George K. Smith, 1936-2014

George K. Smith, Dec. 24, 1936-May 31, 2014.

George Smith, loving husband and amazing father, passed away surrounded by his family at St. Mary’s Hospital on May 31. He was born on Christmas Eve 1936 in Leadville. His parents, Mark and Angeline Herin, raised George and his sisters on a ranch one mile west of Eagle. George graduated from Eagle High School in 1954 and married the love of his life, Betty Neumann, in 1957. They had three daughters and enjoyed supporting the girls’ involvement in many sports and activities. He was very proud of his daughters. He worked as a dispatcher for the Colorado State Patrol in Eagle, transferring to Craig, where he continued to work for CSP as a radio technician. The Smiths moved back to Eagle in 1970, and George went to work for Eagle Telephone Co. and eventually retired in 1994.

George and Betty moved to Grand Junction in 1999 where they thoroughly enjoyed their retirement years. He was a member of Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church.

George was an avid sportsman. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, golfing, playing softball and bowling. George and his buddies prided themselves on being the first to reach Deep Lake on the Flattops each spring. His hobbies included reading, gardening, gambling and watching sports, especially the Rockies and the Broncos.

His parents, Mark and Ann Herin, and his sister, Mary Ann Wilson, preceded him in death. Survivors include his wife, Betty, and three daughters, Valerie (Larry) Black, of Carbondale, Tammie Smith (Dennis Haptonstall), of Grand Junction, and Marcie (Mike) Gass, of Gypsum. Other survivors include his sister, Judy (Howard) Knott, of Montrose, grandchildren Ian and Michael Black and Reagen and Kaden Gass, and numerous nieces and nephews.

Participate in The Longevity Project

The Longevity Project is an annual campaign to help educate readers about what it takes to live a long, fulfilling life in our valley. This year Kevin shares his story of hope and celebration of life with his presentation Cracked, Not Broken as we explore the critical and relevant topic of mental health.

A memorial service will be held in Grand Junction at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church on Friday at 2 p.m.

Graveside services will be held in Eagle at Sunset View Cemetery on Saturday at 9:30 a.m.

Memorial contributions may be made to Eagle County Historic Society, P.O. Box 192, Eagle, CO 81631, or to Histiocytosis Association of America (in honor of Reagen Gass), 332 North Broadway, Pitman, NJ 08071, or online at

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