David Austin Smith, 98, left this earth on December 29, 2020 in Sweeny, Texas. David was born in Moncton, New Brunswick Canada July 8, 1922, and became a naturalized US citizen in 1951. David is preceded in death by his father, Robert Archibald Smith; mother, Annie Ethel Steeves; loving wife, Lena Helen Mathews; and three brothers. He is survived by his five children, William David Smith (Paula Smith), Dwight Coaker (Kathy Coaker), John Coaker (Cheryl Coaker), Kenneth Coaker (Nancy Coaker), and Deborah Nitschke (Kurt Nitschke), and many beloved grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and cousins.
David joined the United States Army in February of 1943, serving three years during World War II. During the war, he met his lovely bride, with whom he wed in March of 1946. After his service in the Army, David and his wife relocated to Michigan, where he spent his career as a Tool and Die Machinist in the automotive industry, and raised his children in Flat Rock Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. In retirement, after multiple visits to Texas, David decided his “bones were tired of the cold” and made Texas his final home in 2013.
David will be remembered by his family and friends for his love of reading, crosswords, westerns, and World War history. He enjoyed listening and dancing to classical music, specifically the big band genre, visiting with friends, and sneaking his grandchildren and dogs (Freddie, Jake, and Sonya) as many treats as possible. His family will mostly miss his witty charm, entertaining ill-timed inappropriate comments and jokes, and his love for his grandchildren. He will truly be remembered with love and laughter.
The family would like to thank the numerous private caregivers that spent time with him over the years and the Angel’s nurses of Bay City, Texas, who checked in on him weekly.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to David’s favorite charities: Shriners Hospital for Children or the St. Joseph’s Indian School for the Lakota children.
David will be laid to rest with his beloved wife at Michigan Memorial Funeral Home in Flat Rock, Michigan at an undetermined date in 2021.