James ‘Mike’ Smith

James 'Mike' Smith

James “Mike” Smith, 73, of Anna, died Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019, at his home, peacefully surrendering to Alzheimer’s, with his wife Judy at his side.

He was born to James Alfred Smith and Marjorie Walter on Oct. 8, 1946, in St. Louis.

A 1964 graduate of Anna-Jonesboro Community High School, he earned a bachelor’s degree in zoology from Murray State University in Murray, Ky., in 1970.  

He returned home to the family business, Walter Hardware in Anna, and in 1979 opened Anna Building Center, where he and his wife worked until 2001, when they closed the business.

He was known for his creative solutions to engineering and construction problems throughout Southern Illinois. The Union County Courthouse in Jonesboro was his last project.

His dedication and charitable contribution to Boy Scouts included teaching and sharing his knowledge in woodworking, biological sciences and outdoor skills with children.

He was also a novice in culinary arts and enjoyed creating gourmet feasts for family and friends. He enjoyed the companionship of many adopted cats and dogs up until the very end.

Survivors include his wife, Judy (Basse); his children, Tabitha and Eric Tripp of Anna, Alison and Chris Poulos of Anna and Jaron Smith of Varna, Bulgaria; four grandchildren, Gavin and Mikaya Tripp and Elliott and Jude Poulos; his sister, Deborah Fitzgerald and husband Mike; an aunt, Peg Walter; and nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

The family will hold a celebration of life at a later date.  

The family has asked that memorial contributions be made to PAWS at 139 E. Vienna St., Anna, Ill. 62906.

To view the obituary or to leave an online condolence for the family, visit www.crainsonline.com.

Crain Funeral Home in Anna-Jonesboro is in charge of arrangements.

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158
Email: news@annanews.com

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