OBITUARIES: Thomas Smith and Eddie Meeker
Thomas Joseph Smith, 89, died Thursday, March 9, 2017, at E.W. Thompson Health and Rehab Center in Sedalia, MO. He was born south of Sedalia on Dec 24, 1927, the ninth child of James and Marie (Schaffer) Smith.
On Dec. 26, 1954, he was married to Rosalie Miller, at the Morton Church in rural Ray County, MO. They lived at the family farm on Kemp Road north of Sedalia, helping care for his parents. In the early 1960s they moved to north of Smithton, MO, where they began their Arator Valley farm.
Smith was a lifelong Pettis County resident and a fulltime farmer and enjoyed all of it. He began raising Limousin cattle and for 38 years marketed them throughout the Midwest, into 22 states and four foreign countries. He and his wife attended World Limousin Conferences in Canada, Brazil, New Zealand, Australia, France, Denmark, Ireland and the U.S. at Fort Worth, TX.
Five of his older siblings served our country in World War II and he served two years in the U.S. Army, a year of it in Germany. He was a 1946 graduate of Hughesville High School.
He was a longtime member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. Also, he was an active member of the Pettis County and national cattlemen’s associations and the North American Limousin Foundation, Heartland and Missouri Limousin Associations.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Rosalie; a sister, Mary Klosterman of Bellevue, WA; sisters-in-law Mary Smith, of Ozark, MO, and Louise King, of Hardin, MO; and brother-in-law, Paul Miller (Geneva), of Sallisaw, OK; along with many nieces and nephews. Preceding him in death were his parents; brothers Robert (Gail), Edwin (Joyce) and Gordon (Rose); sisters Shirley (Dan Duly and Jim Doty), Martha (Milton) Bohon, Margaret (Joseph) Jenkins and Dorothy (John) Larrimer; and brothers-in-law, Bill Miller, Edward Summers, Cecil King, and Gerry Klosterman.
Funeral services were held March 13 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church with Pastor Jeremy Freeman officiating. Burial was in Crown Hill Cemetery, Sedalia, with military honors conducted at graveside.
Memorial contributions are suggested to St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Parkinson’s Foundation or Heifer International in care of McLaughlin Funeral Chapel 519 S Ohio Ave, Sedalia, MO 65301.
Eddie Meeker, 83, passed away on Nov. 15, 2016, in Klamath Falls, OR. He was born on March 10, 1933, in Millville, CA, the second son of Alfred and Beatrice Meeker.
He attended school in MacArthur, CA, and served in the U.S. Army. He married Susan Katherine Witcus in Reno, NV, in 1954. They moved to Jacksonville, OR, then to South Poe Valley in the Klamath Falls area, where he started RSI Bull Marketing.
Meeker ran one of the most successful bull brokerage in the Northwest. At least 14,000 bulls passed through his hands. He traveled all over the West and Canada, buying bulls and meeting potential customers. It was what he enjoyed most. In November 2007, Meeker was awarded membership in the Diamond Pioneer Agricultural Career Achievement Registry, an honor the Oregon State University College of Agricultural Sciences presents. He retired in 2007 and was quoted as saying, “I just loved the bull business.”
He was preceded in death by Susan, his wife of 55 years; parents, Alfred and Beatrice Meeker; brothers, Joe and Danny; grandson, Ryan; and granddaughter, Lacey. He is survived by his brother, John Meeker; his son, Mike; granddaughter, Melissa; great-grandchildren, Spencer and Addison, their father, Kris; and Lane and Easton, and close friends Martha Graham and Ken and Connie Masten.
Graveside services were held Nov. 18, 2016, at Bedfield Cemetery in Klamath Falls. Donations may be sent to support Lewy Body Dementia Awareness and Research at Alzheimer’s Research, 1650 NW Naito Parkway, Suite 190, Portland, OR 97209, or to a charity of the donor’s choice.