Harry D. Smith, Jr., 75, of Wakarusa, passed away Thursday, June 10, 2021.
He was born September 14, 1945, in Topeka, Kansas, the son of Harry D., Sr. and Betty R. Smith. He graduated from Topeka West High School and participated in football.
Harry worked for KNI and TARC teaching and helping children with disabilities obtain employment in the community, owned and operated Smitty's Skelly Service Station, worked as a mechanic for Gary Hardy Dodge dealership, and then worked as a private mechanic from his home. He retired from the United States Postal Service on June 14, 2010 as a rural mail carrier. After retirement, he worked part time for O’Reilly Auto Parts in Topeka.
During his career with TARC, he and his wife, Patty, helped organize the Special Olympics of 1975. Harry had a passion for cars and enjoyed teaching his daughter, Jaclyn, the way around the garage. Aside from working in the garage, he enjoyed attending races with his son and grandsons. He drag raced his 1964 Corvette in his early years. He also enjoyed talking politics with his daughter, Christie, watching old western shows, attending gun shows with his son and best friend in the Mid-West area, and playing golf with Terry at various courses. He was a history buff. Harry had many “projects” in the works and never would fully complete them. He loved to plant twigs that his kids would eventually mow over throughout the yard. He attended his children and grandchildren’s sporting activities over the years. He was also a pitching coach to the kids in their younger years. In the summer of 1990, the family built their home together with Don Figgins and the Boyd Koehn family.
Harry married Patricia “Patty” Smith on November 28, 1970 in Topeka, Kansas. They were married for 38 years. Survivors include his children, Christie (Jesse) Prater, Jaclyn (Brian) Sell, and Terry (Amber) Smith; grandchildren, Isaac Sell, Breanna Prater, Gabriel Prater, Riley Sell, Elijah Prater, Jayden Sell, and Gavin Sell; his ex-wife, Patricia "Patty" Smith; cousin, Andy Beaudry and the Raikes cousins. He was preceded in death by his parents.
Honoring Harry’s wishes, cremation will take place. A graveside service will be at 11:00 am on June 18, 2021 at Mount Hope Cemetery, 4700 SW 17th Street, Topeka, Kansas 66604. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to TARC, 2701 SW Randolph, Topeka, KS, 66611.
To leave a message for the family, please click the "Share Memories" button above.