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Tuesday, November 3, 2020
Starts at 2:00pm (Central time)
E. J. Smith, age 96 of Gatesville, passed away Thursday, October 29, 2020 in Gatesville, Texas. A graveside service will be held Tuesday Nov.3rd, at 2:00 PM at the King Cemetery.
E.J. was born at home in the Bee House community June 8, 1924 to the late Ernest Jackson (Jack) and Birdie Smith. He graduated from Pearl High School in Texas. While in school he was an avid sportsman, but favored basketball, in which he excelled. One of the sons remembered Mrs. Duncan a women’s athletic coach at Gatesville, saying if they had been giving basketball scholarships in those days, E.J. would surely have been a recipient. He continued this love of sports the rest of his life. Soon after high school E.J. entered the Navy and WWII. He was in the Pacific theater in a rescue squadron with the rank of Aviation Machinist Mate,2nd class.
E.J. was an entrepreneur, never afraid of a business adventure. Early on he owned a service station, in Killeen, and later moving to the Gatesville area he owned two different service stations. Later he and Lloyd Ivy, were in partnership, at the White Auto Store for 27 years. E.J. was also at one time a member of the chamber of Commerce, Housing Authority Board, Volunteer Fireman and a member of the Masonic Lodge 197. From boyhood E.J. was an avid fisherman. After his retirement and selling his share of Whites Auto he soon became bored and built and ran a tackle shop in Gatesville. Here many of his buddies would gather, drink coffee, buy some lures, and talk fish…More fish, and bigger fish, were caught in that tackle shop than anywhere in Texas.
He was preceded in death his first wife Katherine (Kitty) Herrington Smith, and later wife Pearl Murry, brothers Ray, Carlton, and Neimire, and a nephew Ward Smith. A host of aunts and uncles, too numerous to name.
Survivors include, brother, Robert Earl Smith; sons, Lewis Smith and wife, Eloise, Danny Smith and wife, Corliss; stepsons, Bobby and Jimmy Murry; grandchildren, Aaron Smith and wife, Shelly, Jeremy Smith, Brandon Smith and wife, Elizabeth; great-grandchildren, Coby Smith and Ashleigh, Nathan, Ian, and Catherine Smith, Gage, Tyler and Alisa; great-great-grandchildren, Scarlett, Taylor, and soon Miley.
Though E.J. had been saved and baptized after coming back to Gatesville, he was a member of a couple of Churches which he regularly attended. But lastly Coryell Community, which he didn’t want to miss. Now he is with Jesus.
The family would like to give a heartfelt thank you to the Staff at the Meadows. They were always, respectful, helpful and loving and also would laugh at Dad's jokes. Thank you!