Memorial is planned at Pass for Richard ‘Dick’ Smith

Richard “Dick” Smith of Snoqualmie Pass, died Friday, April 4, at home.

Dick was born on October 14, 1921, in Cambridge, New York, the eldest son of Richard and Margaret Smith. At age eighteen he joined the United States Navy and served as a chief petty officer during World War II in the Pacific theater on the aircraft carrier, The Franklin. While in the Navy, he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from the University of Louisville, married, and had three sons. After retiring from the Navy in 1959, he moved with his family to Mercer Island and joined The Boeing Company, where he worked on the Minuteman project and then as head of a technical writing department until his retirement in the early 1970’s.

In 1973 Dick moved to Snoqualmie Pass. He became a licensed real estate agent and a self-taught “alpine architect” and contractor. He designed and built many of the chalets in Alpental, and other homes throughout the Pass. He was a volunteer fire fighter with the Snoqualmie Pass Fire Department and was the longest serving fire commissioner in the state of Washington. Dick enjoyed serving the community and was also a water and sewer commissioner for twenty-five years.

During the 1980’s, Dick accepted the position of Vice President of Engineering for Resort Consultants in Treasure Cay, Abaco, Bahamas. He and his wife Betty Jo (“Joey”) made many lifelong friends there, went on great adventures, and shared experiences with many friends and family that came to visit. When they came back, Dick kept busy designing and building chalets at Alpental. Unfailingly energetic, he continued designing garages and homes for people until the age of 88.

His other passions in life included gardening, hosting and attending dinner parties, playing Santa, and traveling with Joey. Dick was patient and kind to everyone. He was humble and unassuming, and everyone felt at home around his warm, soothing personality. Dick was one of the best story tellers of all time, with a remarkable way of making tales just come to life. He was a down-to-earth fellow, showing newcomers to the Pass how to live “mountain style”, and the proper use of a shovel. He was a mentor to many and will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

Survivors include his sons, Rick (Loretta) of Mercer Island; Gary of Sun Valley; step son Tom (Aerin) of Redmond; stepdaughter Janice of Snoqualmie Pass; eight grandchildren, Shawna, Tom, Erin, Jenny, Tracy, Tyler, Amanda and Adrienne; twelve great grandchildren; brother Don of Cape Coral, Florida, and many nieces and nephews.

Dick is preceded in death by his wife, Betty Jo (Joey), two brothers, Bob and Phil, and son, Paul.

A Celebration of Life will be held on May 31st at 1:00 p.m. at the Snoqualmie Pass Fire Station, 1211 State Route 906, Snoqualmie Pass. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that remembrances be made to the Snoqualmie Pass Fire & Rescue.

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