It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Joseph Smith on Sunday, July 11 at the age of 93. He was predeceased by the love of his life and best friend, Alva. They were married 68 years and he missed her greatly.
He was also predeceased by his parents Helen and Joseph, and siblings Florence, Hazel and Elmer. He is survived by brothers Edward (Barb) and Wayne (June) and 6 loving children: Barry (Rose), Bonnie (Lance), Debra (Gilbert), Tammy (Kent), Dale, and Harold (Tina).
He left his community richer with 10 grandchildren: Jessica (Yatin), Kevin (Melodie), Alyssa, Nathan, Charlie (Colleen), Rebecca (Stefan), Kalie (Hans), Graeme (Steph), Matthew (Christine), Ashley, and 10 great grandchildren.
Farming in the Freedom district his whole life, he had a wide circle of friends and was very active in the community. Over the years he was also very active in municipal politics, serving as a county councillor, then Reeve for the County of Barrhead and ultimately became President of the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties. He was involved in creating a local library, preserving shelter belts, and tree planting initiatives, and was chair of the Barrhead General Hospital, Hillcrest Foundation, and many other boards and committees.
Joe had many passions. He loved sports and was an excellent ball player both as a youth and well into his 80s in Barrhead and Arizona. He was an avid curler. He loved watching baseball and hockey on TV and couldn’t get enough of his beloved Blue Jays during the long quarantine. The games were all re-broadcasts of old games, but that was ok because he’d forgotten who won originally anyway! He also loved to fish and hunt and continues to have the trophy Walleye at 15.5 pounds, still the standing record for Alberta.
He leaves his love of the outdoors as a legacy for his grandchildren and great grandchildren. He believed in the beauty of nature and was a keen observer of the patterns of birds and the smells and sounds of the forest. He was an environmentalist ahead of his time and he passed on his belief that each one of us is responsible for taking care of the earth. He was a kind and generous person with a great sense of humor. Above all, he loved his family.
His was a life well lived. We will miss him dearly.
The family would like to thank the staff at the Barrhead Hospital and Hillcrest Lodge. A special thanks to Dr. DeWaal for his care and compassion.
A private service will be held. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to a charity of your choice or plant a tree in his memory.
Expressions of sympathy may be forwarded to the family by visiting westlockfuneralhome.com. Westlock Funeral Home and Crematorium Ltd. 780-349-3474