George W. Smith, Jr.

1930 - 2015

COOPERSTOWN - George W. Smith, Jr. died peacefully Wednesday, December 23, 2015, at St. Francis Hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma, after a brief illness. 

George was born March 10, 1930, in Delhi to George W. Smith and Viola Freidenstine Smith. He spent his early years in Delaware County, and began his education in the Rock Valley and Goulds schools where both of his parents were teachers. 

He moved to Cooperstown with his family in 1945 when they relocated to establish cauliflower farms in the Pierstown area. During his last two years of high school George distinguished himself as a three-star athlete in football, basketball and baseball under the tutelage of "Red" Bursey. As quarterback he led the 1947 football team through an undefeated season and often recalled, "beating Oneonta in the snow." George-along with his teammates-was recently inducted into the Cooperstown Central School Athletic Hall of Fame. 

George attended Springfield College for two years before enlisting in the Air Force where he proudly served his country for four years during the Korean War. In 1956 he moved to Colorado where he completed his education at the University of Colorado in Boulder with a degree in economics. Upon his graduation he went to work for UNIVAC and began his career as a sales representative on "the cutting edge" of the computer industry.

He married Lona Smith October 7, 1967 in Denver, Colorado and the couple moved to Los Angeles, California, where George became sales manager for Systems, Science, and Software. In 1973 George returned to his hometown of Cooperstown to take over the operation of the family dairy farms. In addition George and Lona opened and operated Summerwood Bed and Breakfast in Richfield Springs from 1984-2000. When they sold Summerwood, George and Lona returned to live in the farmhouse on top of the hill on his much loved Tanner Hill Farms. 

In recent years George and Lona spent the winter months in Florida. George loved to travel and meet new friends. 

The Cooperstown United Methodist Church was his church family for most of his life. He was a lifetime member of the Sgt. Walter P. Eggleston Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No 7128 in Cooperstown and a member of the Glimmerglass Festival Guild. 

He is survived by his wife, Lona, of 48 years; sister Kathryn Smith Mollach; nieces Jennifer Mollach Rice (Steven) and August, Patricia Mollach Cassidy, Martha Mollach Stackhouse (Kendal) Julia and Matthew; sister-in-law Sue Parkinson; sister-in-law and brother-in-law Wilda and Jim Metzdorf; niece Amy Metzdorf-Hill (Justin Hill) and Jasmin Hill; his extended Butler family; special friends Cal, Bob, Richard, Herman, Patrick, Wayne, Jason, and Nick; and many long-time friends in Denver and Los Angeles and across the country.

George was predeceased by his parents George W. and Viola Freidenstine Smith, and his brother-in-law, Francis (Les) Mollach and nephew Douglas Lundquist.

There will be a memorial service honoring George's life in Cooperstown in the Spring of 2016. 

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.

If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.