Paul Edward Smith, age 89, of Bainbridge, passed away on Monday, November 18, 2013.
Born December 8, 1923 in Brownsburg, IN, he was the son of Frank R. and Thelma T. (Harris) Smith and was a graduate of Bainbridge High School. He was a graduate of Purdue University "Class of 1950"; having attended on the GI Bill and later received his Master's Degree from the University of Tennessee in animal husbandry. He married Phyllis (Smelser) Smith and she survives.
Paul was a United States Army Air Corp Veteran having flown the P47 Thunderbolt Fighter, a second Lieutenant with the 36th Fighter Group during WWII, flying his first mission on D-Day. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, for heroism while participating in aerial flight in the European Theater on September 1, 1944, and a Purple Heart. Paul was shot down and a German Prisoner of War, missing in action for four months, his family not knowing his status for months.
Paul returned to Putnam County, where he farmed for over 30 years. He also managed the Heritage Lake Property Owners Assn. for nine years in the late 1980s and early 1990s. In the mid 1990's, he founded Aquatic Weed Control, treating lakes throughout Central Indiana for several years. He and Phyllis also owned the Bainbridge Coin-OP Laundry for over 30 years.
He was a member of the Masonic Temple Lodge #47, F&AM; life member of the Scottish Rite; AASR; Northern Masonic Jurisdiction; Lions Club of Bainbridge; American Legion Post # 58;Eastern Star Post 440; Bainbridge Christian Church for 60 years, having served as an Elder; and the Bainbridge United Methodist Church for the past ten years.
Survivors include his wife, Phyllis; sons, Brian (Cherie) Smith and Trent (Lara) Smith, daughters, Carolyn Webber and Deborah (Leonard Voigt) Provisor; eight grandchildren, Kendra Crouch, Lisa McSpadden, Laura Provisor, Amy Webb, Josh Provisor, Matthew Provisor, Olivia Smith, Kaden Smith; several great grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his brother, Robert Smith.
Paul was a dedicated, kind, and loving husband, father, grandfather, who treated all people with respect and dignity. His warm smile and friendly nature welcomed all who met him
Funeral services will be held at 1:00 pm on Friday, November 22, 2013 at the Hopkins-Rector Funeral Home with Pastor Randell Boys officiating. Interment with military honors will follow at the Brick Chapel Cemetery.
The family will receive friends from 4:00 to 6:00 pm on Thursday, November 21st at the funeral home.
Memorial contributions may be made in memory to the Humane Society of Putnam County c/o the Putnam County Foundation 2 N. Jackson St. Greencastle, IN. 46135.