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1 of 6 | Posted by: Joan Richards - Haslett, MI

“David and Patti, and boys, my heart goes out to you ..... We all know what a great Man your Dad was. The only peace I find right now with all of...Read More »
2 of 6 | Posted by: Debbie (Gamble) Jaeck

“David and family......My thoughts and prayers are with you all during this very difficult time. ”
3 of 6 | Posted by: Melanie Murray

“Rod was my boss when I spent 4 yrs. at the Detroit Info office back in the 60s. Always a gentleman, he is remembered fondly. RIP ”
4 of 6 | Posted by: Cliff Johnson

“Everyone at work in Lansing loved Rod Smith. He enriched so many with his teachings. He gave me the courage and organization skills to become a...Read More »
5 of 6 | Posted by: Carol Phillips

“I have many fond memories of Rod. He introduced my wife and I to wild blueberries in the U.P. on a preliminary tour to our eventual home in northern...Read More »
6 of 6 | Posted by: Don Albrecht


Rodney "Rod" R. Smith, 85, of Marquette entered eternal life on Saturday, August 27, 2016 at the Eastwood Nursing Center in Negaunee where he received excellent and compassionate care since becoming a resident in March. Rod was born in Old Mission, Michigan. He often reminisced about his childhood with his "Sister Sue" and his parents. Rod was a very hard worker (he even purchased a car for his parents as a teenager with money earned from working on the Alaskan Railroad.) He was highly educated. He earned a degree in fish and wildlife management, followed by a master's degree and teaching certificate from MI State University. He also studied for his PhD in public administration. He was preceded in death by a daughter, Julie, in 2007; his beloved wife, Evie, who just passed away 5 months ago. He will be deeply missed but we take comfort in knowing he is at peace with the love of his life and dear daughter. Rod was a true gentleman in every sense of the word. He never spoke a bad word about anyone. He was kind to a fault and would help anyone in any way he could. He was an incredible person, father, grandfather, and husband. He was an upstanding member of his community spending countless hours as a volunteer in many different capacities. To name a few, soccer coach for the Lansing Rowdies, helped build 100+ homes through Habitat for Humanity, and a very active member of First United Methodist Church. He was recently awarded a plaque for his many years of service with the DNR Retirees Association. He had many friends and relatives that he loved spending time with. He was an outdoorsman, enjoyed fishing, hunting, and spending time at their family camp. He loved keeping his mind sharp with puzzles, Sudoku, crosswords, and playing cribbage. He was an avid reader and wordsmith, having a fondness for Robert Service poetry and frequently reciting them. He also enjoyed reading Grisham, Patterson, or anything historical, especially anything that involved the U.P. He had an extensive log mark collection that he was most proud of. He loved watching sports and especially was a big Spartan fan. He traveled to every state, but one. His stories were legendary and he loved to tell them to anyone who would listen. Above all, he was a family man. He was a kind man. A fine man. A good man. He was romantic at heart, frequently writing poetry to his wife of 62 years. He was an involved dad to his daughter, Julie and son, Dave, and daughter in law, Patti, "Pitty-Pat". His grandsons, Spencer, and Cooper were the light of his life and he was very proud of them. A funeral service will be held at the Canale-Tonella Funeral Home on Thursday, September 1st at 6 p.m. with the Rev. Kristi Hintz of First United Methodist Church officiating. The Smith family will greet relatives and friends at the funeral home beginning at 4:30 p.m. until the time of the service. A dinner will immediately follow the service in the funeral home. A private burial will take place at Maple Grove Cemetery in Munising at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Habitat for Humanity, 1027 N. Third St., Marquette, MI 49855 or First United Methodist Church 111 E. Ridge St., Marquette, MI 49855 in Rod's memory. The Canale-Tonella Funeral Home is assisting the Smith family where memories may be shared at canalefuneral.com.