Lawrence C. (Larry) Smith, 78, of Asbury, Iowa, crossed the final bar on Saturday, December 29, 2018. Friends may pay their respects on Thursday, January 3, from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. at Egelhof, Siegert and Casper Funeral Home and Crematory, 2659 Kennedy Road. A brief funeral service will follow visitation.
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Larry was born with adventure in his soul on August 18, 1940, in Eustis, FL, son of Joseph M. and Mildred Bearmore Smith. He grew up in Mount Dora, FL, where he received his elementary and secondary education in the public schools. He attended the University of Florida and Lake Sumter State College, and was a graduate of the Maritime Institute of Technology and Graduate Studies. In 1976, he married Carmen Rosales of Biscol, Philippines.
As a youth, Larry enjoyed bicycling and canoeing—activities that foreshadowed his career as a world traveler, first as a seaman in the U.S. Navy from 1958 to 1961, and then as an officer in the U.S. Merchant Marine from 1963 to 1998. His work as a mariner took him to over 70 countries, and he developed a world view unmatched in breadth and depth. He maintained friendships with several of his fellow mariners even after his retirement, corresponding with them in longhand, and held dear to his heart many mementos from his days on the high seas and his time in ports of call.
Larry was a history enthusiast and often turned the most casual conversation into a history lesson. He had a prodigious memory for historical events and dates, and could expound at length on historical figures, both notorious and obscure. He was knowledgeable not only about his homeland, but also about countries and cultures unfamiliar to most of us. Larry was an avid reader, avoided television, and referred to the computer as “the magic box.” During his later years, he spent Sunday evenings listening to the Big Broadcast on KDTH, clearly relishing the memories old-time radio programs evoked.
Larry lived simply and well. He appreciated sunsets, moonrises, and cloudscapes, and he delighted in the activity of birds at the feeders in his backyard and the endearing antics of the chipmunks he provided with generous helpings of peanuts. He was especially fond of the broiled cod and salad bar at Neumann’s Bar and Grill in Holy Cross, IA, a destination to which he made a pilgrimage every Friday evening for the past 12 years.
Those who will honor Larry’s memory include his three children, Christine (Kerry) Madalinski of Escanaba, MI, Christopher Smith, of Long Island, NY, and Elizabeth Kelley, of Fruitland Park, FL; his two stepdaughters, Carmen (David) Brennan of Pleasant Grove, UT, and Kathleen (Jason) Cavalier of Thousand Oaks, CA; seven grandchildren: Lindsey, Michael , Lola, Sydney, Riley, Calvin, and Claire; and three great-grandchildren, Milo, Max, and Mason Sage. The years she shared with Larry will be cherished by his lady friend, Susan M. Dolter, with whom he resided.
Larry was preceded in death by his parents and a sister, Frances E. Glasgow.