Raymond Tye Smith, age 90, peacefully passed away in his home on January 18, 2024. He was born in the LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah, to Henry (Hank) McDonough and Jesse Tye Smith on April 10, 1933. Ray started working outside his home when he was about 10 years old. He mucked stalls and worked in the fields. From that time on, Ray worked tirelessly for those he loved.
Ray enjoyed playing sports, fishing, hunting, watching movies, and driving fast cars. One of Ray’s favorite stories was when he was 14 years old. On a rainy day, on the school bus, Ray spotted two pretty girls walking to school, Rita Ann Morse and her sister, Kay. He didn’t recognize the girls and bravely requested that the bus driver stop and let him off so he could walk with them. This encounter was his introduction to his future wife, Rita.
Ray worked hard, and he also played hard. In high school, Ray lettered in basketball, football, and baseball. Ray also enjoyed dancing at different socials and dance halls, relishing the opportunity to “Pull a girl in close” to the sway of the music.
Ray and Rita eventually became sweethearts, so the young couple decided to have a Valentine’s Day wedding when Ray was drafted into the Army towards the end of the Korean War. Ray was sent to boot camp shortly after their wedding, awaiting the day Rita could join him. The newlyweds made their first home in beautiful Monterey, California, where Ray was stationed at Fort Ord. Despite their limited military stipend, they found happiness in a tiny house they shared with another army couple. During this time, their first beautiful child, Derek, was born. Ray was a cook for the Army and worked in the hospital kitchens during the mornings and days. During the evenings, he would bartend in the officers’ club for extra money. Ray didn’t drink, which made him a favorite among the bar’s managers because he didn’t consume any profits. When planning to leave the military, the doctors and officers asked Ray to re-enlist because they enjoyed his cooking. Still, the decision was made to go back home.
After returning to Utah, Ray and Rita welcomed four more spectacular children into their lives. The couple resided in Kearns, where Ray served as a young bishop, before building a home in Taylorsville, where they spent their remaining years.
With the help of other siblings, Ray and his mother ran the cafeteria and clubhouse dining at Meadowbrook Golf Course, where Ray learned about refrigeration to avoid high repair costs. That led to him starting a refrigeration & air conditioning company he ran for the next 40+ years.
He found joy and happiness while tending to his garden and fruit trees. On many spring and summer afternoons, after a long and hot day at work, Ray would be found working in his garden or leaning on his shovel, enjoying the peace and what was growing. Ray instilled invaluable knowledge of gardening and industriousness to his children & grandchildren. Later in life, Ray could be found on his mower, where he introduced any child, he could get to stop running wild for a few minutes, to the joys of gardening.
Ray deeply loved and found joy in his wife. Ray flirted with his sweetheart until her passing. He loved life, which a loving Father in Heaven gifted him. Ray had a positive outlook on life, making the best of any circumstance. He was an excellent baby holder and would rock children and grandchildren into the night, giving their mothers rest.
Ray loves the Lord. He has given freely of his energy, love, and resources. Rita often quoted her husband’s patriarchal blessing, saying that Christ would call Ray his friend. Ray’s compassion and willingness to assist others testify to that telling. Ray was loyal, believed in the power of prayer, and prayed over his family daily. Ray was a great example of hard work, resourcefulness, and patience.
Ray was preceded in death by his beloved wife Rita, his parents, his brother Reed Smith, and his brother Michel Smith. Ray is survived by his siblings, Lois Barker, Greg McDonough (Karel), Jesse Smith (Shiela), his deceased siblings’ wives, Cynthia Smith and Cindy Smith, and his sister-in-law, Kay Albrechtsen (Cecil). His loving children also survive Ray, Derek Smith (Lena), Lance Smith (Susan), Wade Smith (Georgia), Nicole Gregory (Travis), and Stephanie Smith. Ray is also survived by his wonderful grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and many loving nieces and nephews, whom Ray profoundly loves.
Wonderful Ray, you are missed already. We appreciate all you have done for each of us, and we will hold dear all you have taught us throughout our lives. May our actions always honor you and your extraordinary life.
Viewings will be held Friday evening, January 26, 2023, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm, and Saturday, January 27, 2023, from 10:00 to 10:45 am, after which the funeral services will be at 11:00 am. Graveside services will then begin at 1:00 pm.
Viewings and funeral location: Taylorsville Stake Center: 4845 Woodhaven Dr, Taylorsville, UT 84123 Graveside services location: Valley View Memorial Park: 4335 W 4100 S, West Valley City, UT 84120