Obituary Details

William Henry Smith Sr.

(12/10/1908 - 08/15/1963)
Courtesy of The Lusk Herald, 07/31/1963

Bill Smith Sr. Dies Here Thurs.

Bill Smith, Sr., 54, retired Lusk motel operator and former Niobrara rancher, died last Thursday from cancer. He had been ill with the disease of some time.

Funeral services were held from the Peet Chapel Monday afternoon. The Rev. Roger Koen, minister of the First Baptist Church of Lusk presided at the services.

Casket bearers were C. E. Hollon, Richard Pfister, Jr., Mike Cork, Otto Krekeler, Clyde Blackmore, W. W. (Buck) Culver. Honorary casket bearers were Richard Pfister, Sr., Slim Danks, Jack Johnson, Mason Miller, Huck Baldwin, A. F. DeCastro, Eddie Plumb, C. W. Erwin, Ernie Mass, Hans Gautschi, Ray Larson, Al Taylor, Russell Bonsell, Herbert Klindt, T. A. Godfrey.

Mrs. Edna DeCastro played the organ and Mrs. Lyle Eddy sang, "The Last Roundup" and "The Lord's Prayer." Burial was made in the Lusk Cemetery.

William Henry Smith was born at Weister Creek, Wis., December 10, 1908, the son of William and Elma Smith. His father died when he was one year old. When he was seven, his mother and sister, Beurlie, came to Edgemont where he was reared and later employed on the Richard Pfister Sr. ranch. His mother was also employed at the ranch. He attended both the Edgemont and Weister Creek schools.

He and Hester Violet Brey were married at Ontario, Wis., June 28, 1930. Their son William, Jr. was born June 18, 1931. In 1938 the family came back to the Pfister ranch where they remained until World War II when Mr. Smith helped build the Casper Air Base. Later he lived on and managed the Henry Petz and Frank Willson ranches north of Lusk. While on the Willson ranch he became ill and moved to Lusk.

In 1947 he built Smith's Motor Lodge and became extremely active in tourist promotions activities, for Lusk. He was a director and vice president of the Highway 20 Association and was largely responsible for re-vitalizing the organization when it suffered from inactivity. He was, prior to his retirement in 1962, vice-president of the Wyoming Motor Court Association. He had a reputation for getting things done when it came to promotions.

He and Mrs. Smith sold the Motor Lodge when he became ill in 1962 and partly for enjoyment and partly for business he returned to working with one of his great loves-horses.

He is survived by his wife, Hester; son William Jr.; three grandchildren, Brett, David and Bruce Smith; three sisters, Mrs. Sara Jones, Newport , Wash., Mrs. Mary Stenerson, Fennimore, Wis., Beurlie Greenburg, Arlington, Va. and several nieces and nephews.

Images & Attachments

Photo by Debbie Rose

Related/Linked Records

Record Type Name
Obituary Brey, Harry (11/30/-0001 - 07/02/1966) View Record
Obituary Brey, Paul (10/11/1934 - 02/12/2004) View Record
Obituary Smith, Sean (02/02/1985 - 02/02/1985) View Record
Obituary Smith, William (07/18/1931 - 11/28/2002) View Record
Obituary Smith, William (11/01/1956 - 02/02/2015) View Record
Obituary Smith, Hester (04/13/1908 - 11/02/2015) View Record
Historical Highway 20 View Record