VeteranCharles Smith Jr.

Charles Smith Jr.Charles E. "Chuggie" Smith Jr., 89, of Cuba died at 10:16 a.m. May 7, 2011, at St. Francis Hospital in Peoria.

He was born March 28, 1922, in Cuba, the son of Charles E. and Sarah Elizabeth Murphy Smith Sr. He married Joan Simpson on May 21, 1950, in Cuba. She died Feb. 18, 2002.

Also preceding him in death were one sister, Violet Marshall; six step siblings, Florence Sharpe Heaton, Guy Henry Sharpe, Ray Donald Sharpe, George Nathaniel Sharpe, Gladys Sharpe and Albert Lee Sharpe; and one grandson, David Del Brooks.

Surviving are three daughters, Martha Ann Harr and Mary Jane (and Carl) Chester both of Cuba, and Margaret Lynn (and Larry) Brooks of Smithfield; five grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; and one step great-grandson.

He attended Cuba schools, serving as Student Council president and graduating in 1940.

He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II in the Southwest Pacific area for two and one half years and was a member of the Russell Smith Post #533 American Legion since that time. He worked as a coal miner for over 40 years, all but the last two and one half years in Fulton County mines: Little Sister, Truax-Traer, Consol and Burning Star #3 (Sparta). He worked as a heavy equipment mechanic. Other jobs included working for Butler (Galesburg), TP&W and briefly as an automobile mechanic.

He spent eight years as a Cuba alderman of Ward 3; served on Putnam Township Library Board (vice-president); and Spoon River District Library Board (president).

He was a member of Cuba Masonic Lodge #534 A.F. & A.M. (Third Degree), Fulton County Historical and Genealogical Society, Illinois State Genealogical Society, Illinois State Historical Society, National Muzzle Loading Rifle Association, Life Member of National Rifle Association and retired member of United Mine Workers of America.

He was a member of the Cuba United Methodist Church since 1949 and served on the Cuba Volunteer Fire Department for 44 1/2 years.

He served as Parade Marshal for the 100th anniversary parade for the Soldiers and Sailors Reunion.

A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday at Cuba Cemetery with Rev. Kevin Kessler officiating. Military services will be conducted by Cuba American Legion Russell Smith Post 533. Henry-Lange Memorial Home of Cuba was in charge of arrangements.

Memorials may be made to Cass-Putnam Rescue Squad, Cuba Volunteer Fire Department, Cuba Senior Center or another worthy cause in the Cuba area.

Condolences may be sent to www.henrylange.com.

Published in the Astoria South Fulton Argus on 5/11/2011

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