Don Smiley, 82


Graveside funeral services for Donald Dean Smiley, 82, of Theodosia, were held Feb. 2, at Hart Cemetery in Dugginsville. 

He died Jan. 30, 2024, at Baxter Health in Mountain Home, Arkansas.  

Don was born July 3, 1941, along with his twin brother, David Gene, to George and Edna Smiley. He leaves his legacy of love, kindness and a strong commitment to his community. He was a beloved son, husband, father and prominent member of Theodosia.

He is survived by his wife, Connie (of 13,081 days), his daughter Tava, her husband Lauder and his grandson Lochlan Hawk, whom Don affectionately referred to as “The Hawk.” His family was the center of his world and the joy of his life. 

Hunting and fishing were also great passions of Don’s. He spent many-an-early morning on his boat or up in a deer stand. He was an avid outdoorsman and environmentalist. He loved the land he lived on and took great care of it.

Being an Eagle Scout in his early years had given Don a great sense of pride. He went on to do well in school as an all-star baseball player and scholar, graduating summa cum laude from Central Missouri State University. He received his master’s degree in business administration from University of Missouri Kansas City and graduated at the top of his class.  

Serving as a naval officer for six years and one as a lieutenant on active duty in Vietnam meant much to Don. He was proud to be a veteran, impacting how he lived his life. He always said if he left Vietnam alive, he would go on to live somewhere green where he could hunt and fish every day. And he did.

Don also had a knack for poetry and wrote many poems over the years, often leaving them on a sticky note or napkin somewhere for Connie to find. He also loved playing tennis, telling silly jokes and spending time with one of his dogs.

Don was the owner and operator (and award-winning broker) of the Sierra Ozark Real Estate Corp. He ran it successfully for 50 years before he retired this past year. His passion for real estate and commitment to excellence made a lasting impact on the community. Don’s integrity, honesty and hard work earned him the respect and admiration of his colleagues and clients.

Beyond his professional achievements, Don was known for his warm heart, generosity and willingness to lend a helping hand. He had a special way of making everyone feel valued and appreciated, creating lasting friendships throughout his lifetime. Anyone who met Don will remember his larger-than-life personality, great story-telling ability and infectious smile. He lived by the golden rule: “Treat others the way you want to be treated.”

Don Smiley will not be forgotten. He was truly one of a kind. He was a man who loved and lived the life he imagined. He will be greatly missed.

Instead of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Gideon’s International, PO Box 1111, Forsyth, MO 65653 (or at, or the Hart Cemetery Fund at Century Bank of the Ozarks.

Ozark County Times

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