Eldon

April 25, 1932 ~ November 14, 2021

Born in: Roseville, KY
Resided in: Iowa City, IA

Eldon J. Smith, 89, of Glasgow, Kentucky, passed away Saturday, November 13, 2021, in Iowa City, Iowa. He was born in Glasgow, Kentucky, on April 25, 1932, to the late Cecil Smith and Gladys Hammett Smith.

Mr. Smith graduated from Glasgow High School in 1950 and earned a B.A. from Western Kentucky University in 1954, followed by an M.A. in 1958 and his Rank I in 1968. While completing his certification as a teacher and administrator, he served two years in the United States Army from 1954-1956. Between 1956 and 1962 Mr. Smith worked as a teacher and principal in Ohio and Florida before returning to Kentucky in 1962 as principal of Le Grande Elementary School in Hart County. After three years at Le Grande he joined the Glasgow Independent School District, serving as Junior High Principal for four years (1965-1969), High School Principal for four years (1969-1973), Director of Pupil Personnel for three years (1973-1976), and Superintendent for fourteen years (1976-1990).

Both before and after his retirement in 1990, Mr. Smith was actively involved in the Glasgow community. He joined the Glasgow Baptist Church in 1962 and became a Rotarian in 1973, serving as President in 1982. He also served as the founding President of the Glasgow Educational Foundation starting in 1992 and was a member of the Glasgow City Council for fifteen years during the 1990s and 2000s.

Mr. Smith is recently preceded in death by his beloved wife, Reva Faye (Witt) Smith, whom he married on October 21, 1956, and who passed away on August 11, 2021. Family always came first for the Smiths, but together as a team they enjoyed supporting local institutions such as the Glasgow Musicale and travelling in the U.S. and Europe. After retirement they also spent many happy hours renovating the farmhouse and maintaining the farm at Roseville, Kentucky, where Mr. Smith was born.

Survivors include daughters Lida Norris of Glasgow and Doris Witt (Bluford Adams) of Iowa City, Iowa; grandchildren Franklin Norris of Hendersonville, Tennessee, Kyle Norris (Azlisya) of Burlington, Kentucky, and Binh Nguyen and Mai Hoang of Iowa City, Iowa; and great grandchild Adam Norris of Burlington, Kentucky.

In addition to his wife and parents, he is preceded in death by a son-in-law, Timothy Franklin “Tim” Norris and a brother James Ewell.

The family would like to thank the wonderful staff of Legacy Gardens, in Iowa City, IA, for their attentive and loving care for both Mr. and Mrs. Smith and for making it possible for them to fulfill their dream never to be separated. A private family graveside service will be held Wednesday, November 17, at the Glasgow Municipal Cemetery with the DAV Chapter # 20 of Glasgow providing Military Honors. Lensing Funeral Home in Iowa City and A.F. Crow in Glasgow are honored to have been entrusted with the care of both Mr. and Mrs. Smith.

In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations to the Glasgow Education Foundation. c/o Tara Martin, 711 South L Roger Wells Blvd, Glasgow, KY 42141.

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  1. I’m so sorry to hear of his passing. He was always such a gentleman and a great role model for teenagers. He was our principal for 6 years having been “promoted” with us from junior high to high school. When time came for us to select a commencement speaker for our graduation, it was unanimous for Mr. Smith. I hope he knew the high esteem in which we held him.

    I will be thinking of your family.

  2. So very to hear this, it was my pleasure, not only knowing the family, but working with Mr. Smith as HS Band director from 1976-1981, when I retired. It was certainly an honor to work with him, and his great support for the band program.

  3. Lida and family,
    My heart breaks for you as such a special man moves on from this life. He has left behind a beautiful family legacy, and a mark of distinction on this community that will live on well beyond his time here on Earth. He will always have a special place in my heart. I am thankful my life’s path crossed with his.

  4. Mr. Smith, I eventually called him Eldon, was my principal, my superintendent and my friend. He, Faye, Bernice and I enjoyed three trips to Europe together and had great times together. I know he will be missed by his family and by the many the fellow educators and students he influenced.

  5. I am sorry for the passing of Eldon. He was an outstanding husband, father, educator, community servant, and friend
    .

  6. Smitty was so sad to loose his really good friend. He enjoyed Eldon in Sunday School Class. Eldon and Smitty had many car trips together. Great stories from those trips. We are sending love and prayers to all who loved him. He and Faye were part of our church family and I can still see Faye singing in the choir.

  7. What a fine man and a pillar of the Glasgow community. Eldon and Faye were major supporters of Glasgow Musicale. He will be missed.

  8. So sorry to hear of Mr Smith’s passing. Enjoyed working with him on the Glasgow Foundation Board. Such a fine gentleman.

  9. Mr. Smith was like E. F. Hutton, “When Mr. Smith spoke, people listened.” We not only listened out of respect for our superintendent; but because he possessed common sense, infinite mature wisdom and an unwavering desire to serve all students of the Glasgow Independent Schools. He was an exemplary leader and mentor. Sending prayers to you and yours…

  10. A true gentleman who displayed respect and dignity to everyone. Mr. Eldon Smith instilled a sense of caring for others, and he was a very unique and special educator. When he and his wife walked around the indoor walking track at the YMCA, you sensed a special marriage and love they had for each other. It was always a joy to talk to Mr. Smith. He will be missed but not forgotten.

  11. So sorry to hear about your dad, he was such a kind man. Prayers for your family at this difficult time.

  12. So sorry for your loss. My family thought so much of the Smiths. My sister, Nan, and Doris were good friends in school. Thinking of you all. Prayers for peace.

  13. The world today needs more people like Eldon Smith. Praying for his family during this season of loss. Lida and Kyle, please know you are especially in our prayers.

  14. He was a special gentleman that will be missed.
    He was one of the best cheerleaders throughout the boys sports.

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