Dr. Gerry Smith
Central Valley, Utah
Dr. Gerald "Gerry" Lloyd Smith died peacefully at home on December 15, 2022 at the age of 96. He was preceded in death by his wife of 61 years, Ellen Frances Compton Smith.
Gerry is survived by his children: Meredith Dexter, WY; Todd, OR; Bruce, MD; Phillip, UT; Benjamin, MO; Daniel, Richfield; Stephen, Korea; Rosemary Newbry, WA; 34 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren.
Gerry had a rich and wonderful life, spanning most of the 20th century. He was born on August 18, 1926 in Casper, WY to Lloyd Gaston Smith and Lucy Winnifrid Fairhall. Most of his formative years were on the island of Aruba where his father worked as general manager of the Lago Oil Refinery. He graduated from Aruba High School in 1943, and went to Hamilton, NY to study at Colgate University where he graduated with a degree in Chemistry in 1947. He served in the US Navy from 1944-1946 and was stationed at the Great Lakes Naval Training Station in Chicago, IL, and then Corpus Christi, Texas where he was trained as an electronic technician. He went to Washington University in St. Louis, MO for medical school and graduated in 1951. He moved to Denver in 1955 after his residency to work as an assistant professor at the University of Colorado. In 1956, Gerry moved to Cheyenne, WY to join Dr. Russell Williams' Ear, Nose and Throat practice. Shortly after he moved to Cheyenne, he met and married Ellen Compton on August 29, 1959 in Biloxi, MS. They were later sealed in 1960 in the LDS Salt Lake City Temple. Also in 1960, Gerry started his own Ear, Nose, and Throat practice in Cheyenne. Gerry and Ellen made their home in Cheyenne where they raised all eight of their children.
First and foremost, Gerry Smith was a family man and spent many hours working and playing with his two daughters and six sons. Gerry was an active and dedicated member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He held many lay leadership positions within the local congregation including Elders Quorum president, bishop and High Councilor.
Professionally, he practiced medicine with Bill Gibbens and Martha Silver providing services ranging from audiology to allergy treatments. He sat on the Wyoming state Medical Commission, was an examiner of the Wyoming Nursing Homes as well as a doctor for the Wyoming State Legislature when it was in session. He was also a ring doctor for the Wyoming state boxing club and railroad doctor for the Union Pacific for 40 years.
In his free time he enjoyed all outdoor activities available in the Rocky Mountains from kayaking to fly fishing and hunting big-game. It wasn’t uncommon for the basement of the Smith home to become a makeshift butcher shop often turning out elk steaks and antelope burgers. He was a co-owner in AeroVentures, with Bill Snyder and logged over 1800 hours flying often in adverse weather. He loved singing opera and could recite poetry he had learned in 4th grade in 4 different languages. He was a generous and witty individual who was passionate about his faith.
After he retired in 1996, Ellen and Gerry served three medical missions and two temple missions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints over a span of 20 years in the following places: Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; Quito, Ecuador; Morristown, New Jersey; and Denver, Colorado. They left an enduring legacy of love and service in each of these places, strengthening and inspiring those they served. Gerry and Ellen were also temple workers at the Denver and Ft. Collins temples – a place that they both dearly loved to be.
In the two years since Ellen’s passing, Gerry was fortunate enough to spend meaningful time with all of his children, providing an opportunity to create valuable memories and record a substantial family history.
A celebration of Gerry’s life is scheduled for Saturday, January 28, 2023 at 10:00 a.m. at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 309 Western Hills Blvd., Cheyenne, WY. A virtual option will be available to those who cannot attend in person by going to www.schradercares.com
Cremation services to take place at the Magleby Mortuary and Cremation Center. Funeral Directors: Magleby Mortuary, Richfield, Salina and Manti. Online guestbook at www.maglebymortuary.com
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Latter-day Saint Charities at www.latterdaysaintcharities.org/ .