Cover photo for Lesley Smith's Obituary
Lesley Smith Profile Photo
1935 Lesley 2023

Lesley Smith

December 3, 1935 — March 12, 2023

formerly of Gaines Township

Lesley R. Smith, formerly of Gaines Township,  passed away March 12, 2023 at home with his son and daughter in law by his side. He was 87.

Lesley was the only child of Lesley E. and (Adora) Blanche Smith, born on December 3, 1935 in Grubbs, Arkansas. The family moved to Michigan when he was 12. He attended Gaines High School, class of '52,  and graduated when he was 16. After high school he went to Mott College and graduated with a degree in accounting. He also served in the Army Reserves. He was a FreeMason. On May 12th, 1962 he married Sally Rae Strope in a private ceremony at his parents home in Gaines, Michigan.

Les worked for General Motors Truck and Bus in Flint, starting in accounting and eventually moving to the new computer division. He finished his career with EDS for a combined 36 years of service.  In his retirement, Les enjoyed his home in Gaines, digging several ponds for fish and area wildlife, raising pheasants and feeding the wild birds. In his lifetime, he planted at least 18,000 trees, pines and black walnuts, on various properties in Gaines. He loved fishing Jackhat Lake and pheasant season, making several hunts out of state with his son, Jeff. He enjoyed frequent trips to Texas to visit his grandchildren via Arkansas to catch up with cousins. Every March he could be found on the beaches of Florida searching for shark teeth and shells, escaping the Michigan winters.

As a founding member of Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church in Gaines, he served as their Sunday School superintendent and had a heart for supporting missions. He loved Jesus and studying the Bible.  His love of the Lord was the biggest influence in his life. He was a member there for 40 years.

In the fall of 2017, he moved to Kauai with his son, Jeff and daughter in law, Debbie.  About the move to Hawaii, he liked to say, "Not bad for a kid from Arkansas!"  He lived with them until his passing.

Les is survived by his 2 children, Brenda Brown of Sugar Land, Texas and her husband Chuck and grandchildren Ryan and Lauren, his son Jeff of Kapaa, Kauai and his wife Debbie. No service is planned at this time. His final resting place will be Hanalei Bay, Hawaii.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Lesley Smith, please visit our flower store.


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