Michael Joseph Smith, 81, of Benwood, WV, died Monday, June 14, 2021 at home surrounded by his family.
Born in Wheeling, WV on April 1, 1940, Mike was the son of Robert and Elizabeth (Conrad) Smith. He was a member of St. John Catholic Church, Benwood; a life member of the Cave Club and Eagles in Wheeling; a 64 year member of the Benwood Volunteer Fire Department where he served as Fire Chief for 54 years; and a distinguished member of the West Virginia State Firemen’s Association, where he attended over 60 Fire Department Conventions. In 2017, West Virginia Governor, Jim Justice, honored him with the Distinguished West Virginian Award (the highest award that can be presented to a citizen).
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by the love of his life, Bonnie (Nickerson) Smith, grandson Joshua Fratkin and 10 sisters: Margaret Merryman, Mary Louise Greathouse, Betty Long, Bertha Schrumph, Theresa Risden, Jeannie Radcliffe, Sandy James and Nancy Hawk, infant sisters Paula and Patricia. As well as 5 brothers: Buzzy, Al, John Paul, Jimbo and Eddie.
Surviving him are his son, Thomas (Mary) Smith of Florida and 4 daughters Tammy (Ralph) Brandon of Benwood, Debbie (Lou) Richmond of Glen Dale, Kathy (CR) Coleman of Benwood, and Michelle (Rick) Robbins of Benwood. Grandchildren: Charity Karrasch of Wheeling, Kate (Coty) Shelton of Florida, Elizabeth (Keith) Berberich of Wheeling, Michael (Stephanie) Brandon of Ohio, Bryan (Laken) Brandon of Benwood, David (Megan) Richmond of Texas, Bobby Richmond and Jennifer Richmond of Glen Dale, Cirstin (Bill) Redman of Wheeling, Courtney (Benny) Sierra of Wheeling, Cristyn (Ethan) Davis of Ohio. Great-grandchildren: Kendyl, Keigan and Klayne Brandon, Jayden and Jaymison Redman, Quinton, Chloe and Nami Sierra, Zuri Davis, Alice Richmond, Declan Berberich, and Chase Snyder. A special son David Tennant of Florida. Two sisters, Ella Mae McGill and Patsy Taylor of Benwood, sister in law Marti Tennant of Florida, along with numerous nieces and nephews.
Friends will be received at Altmeyer Funeral Home, Benwood-McMechen Chapel, 214 Marshall Street, McMechen, on Wednesday from 4-8 pm and Thursday from Noon until time of Fireman’s Service at 7:30 pm.
Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 am, Friday, June 18, 2021, at St. John Catholic Church, Benwood, with Rev. That Son Ngoc Nguyen as celebrant. Interment will follow in Greenwood Cemetery, Wheeling.
Memorial contributions can be made to the Benwood Volunteer Fire Department and/or The JaymisonStrong Fund at WesBanco Bank.