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Obituary for Charles A. Smith

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Charles A. Smith

August 26, 1924 - May 29, 2014

Charles A. Smith
August 26, 1924 – May 29, 2014

With family members at his side, Charles A. Smith, 89, passed away at his home on May 29 after a two-year struggle with cancer.
Charles (Charlie) was a gifted man: a talented pianist/musician, a dedicated teacher, a proud veteran, a skilled pilot, photographer, and woodworker, and most of all a loving husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather who turned these passions to the service of his nation and his Ogden community
At 13, he was the youngest Utahan ever to play Liszt’s Piano Concerto in E Flat Major with the University of Utah Symphony. At 17 he was invited to be a guest soloist with the New York City Philharmonic. He actively provided service to Ogden in all aspects of music: He was the President of the Utah Symphony Guild in Ogden, the President of the Utah Music Teachers Association, a member of the Royal Guild of Organists, Great Britain, and the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers. For 40 years he taught Band, Orchestra, Choir and Keyboard music in the Ogden City Schools. Closest to his heart was the 62 years he spent as Music Director, Choirmaster and Organist for the First Presbyterian Church, in Ogden, Utah.
At 18, he served his country during World War II by joining the Navy and training as a pilot. He became a flight instructor at Cabaniss Field in Corpus Christi, Texas, before being sent on extended duty ferrying bombers over England.
After leaving the Navy, he served his Ogden community in many ways: as a five time Master of the George Washington (now Golden Spike) Masonic Lodge, as a member of the Shrine Band, as a Grand Lodge Organist, as a member of the Rotary Club, and as a skilled photographer and woodworker who donated his work to the Ogden Nature Center Gift Shop.
But even more important than these accomplishments, he earned a place in the hearts of many because of his genuine interest in them, and because of his kind and generous nature in his relationships with all who lived and worked with him.
He is survived by his wife, Jamie McBeth, and their son Ian Smith; by his brother Adolph (Karen) Otterstein; sister Evanne (Sam) Blake; by his daughter-in law, Joan Hampton Smith; Cheryl (Richard) Hazel; Charles (Meg) Smith; Virginia (Norman) Bright; Quentin Smith and Helen Thorsheim, and by 12 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren.
He is preceded in death by his first wife Frances Browning Smith and their son Douglas Browning Smith.
We will always love him.
A Memorial Service will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, 21 June, at the First Presbyterian Church, 880 28th Street, Ogden. A graveside service will follow at Leavitt’s Aultorest Memorial Park, 836-36th Street, Ogden, under the direction of Leavitt’s Mortuary.
The family would like to thank the Reverend Dr. Richard Paul Minnich and Dr. Seth Lewis and the staff at Encompass Hospice for their kind and expert care. We are profoundly grateful for it.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Encompass Home Health & Hospice, 5478 South Adams Avenue Parkway, Suite B, Ogden, Utah, 84405.
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Service Schedule

Service Information

Date: Saturday, June 21, 2014

Time: 10:00 am -

First Presbyterian Church


880 28th Street , , Ogden, UT,

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Cemetery Information

Date: Saturday, June 21, 2014

Time: 11:00 am -

Aultorest Memorial Park


836 36th Street, , Ogden, UT, 84403

Memorial Information


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Timeline for Charles A. Smith

Born: August 26, 1924
Died: May 29, 2014

Condolences for Charles A. Smith

Melanie Lewis posted on 6/23/14

What a sad day to see the passing of a great man. Many years ago, about forty, Mr. Smith was my piano teacher. He had a beautiful Yamaha piano I loved to play. He loved music. You could tell it was in his heart. One of the great accomplishments he did was he told me he was building a harpsichord from scratch!!! I thought he must be a genius!!!. And now I know he was. I wonder if his harpsichord is still around. A wonderful man he was. I hope he didn't suffer his last years. He will be missed by all


Carol E. Meyer posted on 6/21/14

Hello to Jamie, Ian and Charles' beloved family. My parents were friends of Charles' for a long time. My mother, Virginia B. Meyer (Ginnnie) grew up with him in Ogden. My father, Joe Meyer, got to know him a little later, and later again when my parents retired in Ogden in 1992. Dad sang in the choir at the 1st Presbyterian church, and Charles was the musical director. The Choir parties were joyous events at Charles and Jamie's home. When I moved to Ogden in 2000, I got to know Charles, Jamie and Ian. What a neat family! After my Dad died in 2005,Charles took a special interest in me. He supported me in my acupuncture practice by visiting me regularly for years. Charles became something of a father figure to me. I will always remember the way he called me "Kid" and his advice that I should get rid of my perpetual clutter with either a bulldozer or a dumpster. I loved his stories. The one I'd like to hear again is the one about the day they called his father in to solve the train crisis. For some reason the nation lost its ability to track all the trains, and it was a very dangerous situation. The part I remember is that his Dad stopped all the trains and then one by one got them going again. Charles was a unique man, one who shall be greatly missed. Many blessings to him and the family. Sincerely, Carol E. Meyer


Evelyn Christensen posted on 6/19/14

Hi my name is Evelyn Christensen. I had the pleasure of learning to play the flute in a band class at Ogden High School. I graduated in 1973. I will never forget the opportunity that I had to play music at football and basketball games, march in the parades in Ogden and visit an indian reservation to play our music. Charles is a great teacher. He made a lasting impression on me. My condolences to his family.


Ron Jackson posted on 6/18/14

Hello, my name is Ron Jackson I’m the administrator for Encompass Hospice. I wanted to thank you for the honor our staff had of being able to care for Charles at the end of his life. We so appreciated the care you as a family provided Charles as you allowed us in his home to assist you at that challenging time. Our staff valued their short time with Charles, Jamie and you as a family. We will be in contact over the coming months but if you would like to meet with any of our staff over the coming months please do not hesitate to call. I also want to thank you for your gracious recognition of our staff and agency in the obituary and the suggestion that donations be made to our Encompass Cares Foundation. Jamie, you and your family are in our thoughts and I wish you the best as adjustments to Charles passing are made in your family and pray that the memories and love you shared will sustain you in the coming years. All the best Ron Jackson


Sharon Schirack Kerkman posted on 6/17/14

I loved Mr. Smith all 3 years at Mount Ogden Junior High School in the late 1960's. He had a unique way of teaching us to sing, and I am forever grateful for having had him as my vocal teacher. I had the privilege of being an accompanist for our chorus productions, and he taught me to love my piano as much as he did. He also had a harpsichord that I fell in love with. Now my easy play organ has a harpsichord on it that sounds like the real thing. Mr. Charles Smith, may you rest in peace. You earned your angel wings. Love you forever, one of you many happy students......


Randi (Benson) Kennedy Jackson posted on 6/14/14

Oh, so sad to see the loss of one of my treasured teachers. We had a blast in band class and I will never forget the great times we had. I hope that his illness did not bring much suffering. My thoughts and prayers go to his family hoping that you will find some peace and comfort soon.


Marilyn Lundstrom Hales posted on 6/8/14

Mr. Smith was my choir teacher at Mt. Ogden Jr. High from 1964-67. I was shy at the time, but he recognized my interest in music and encouraged me to play my guitar in front of the class and audition for the school musical. He was such an inspiriation to me as both a musician and teacher. I have had a long career both in choral music and in education. He was my initial inspiration to pursue both. My condolences to your family and a big THANK YOU to a wonderful mentor! Wonderful memories.