Donnie Eugene Smith, age 67, passed away peacefully into his heavenly father’s arms Wednesday April 5, 2017. Donnie was born August 13, 1949, in Prairie Grove, AR, to his parents, Homer and Dorothy Smith. Donnie is preceded in death by his mother, Dorothy Smith.
He is a 1967 graduate from Springdale High School, where he later was inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame for basketball. He attended the University of Central Arkansas, formally known as State College of Arkansas, where he received a scholarship to play basketball. He graduated in 1972 with a degree in Physical Education. He married his high school sweet heart, Rebecca “Becky” Smith (Nelson) on May 22, 1971. He later received his Masters Degree in School Administration from the University of Arkansas. Donnie coached basketball, taught history, and finished his career as a school administrator. He retired from education in 2011 after 41 years of service in the state of Arkansas.
Donnie was an avid sports fan, devoted husband and father, and loved dearly by his four granddaughters who call him “Poppa Donnie.” For the past 17 years he participated in Senior Olympic Basketball and served on the Arkansas Senior Olympic Board. His team, the Arkansas Travelers, have won five consecutive National Championships and five consecutive World Game Championships. He and his wife Becky remained dedicated to education and served as presidents of the UAMS College of Medicine Parents’ Club in 2012. He was dedicated to community service and served in the Lion’s Club of Harrison for 22 years.
Donnie is survived by his father, Homer Smith; his wife, Becky Smith; his brother, Gary Smith; his children, Mandy Fimple (Daryl) and Josh Smith (Sydney); his granddaughters, Payten, Katie, Ella, and Eva; his mother-in-law, Murl Steed; his aunt, Mary Lou High; and his cousin and his wife, Jimmy and Holly High.
A memorial service was held Tuesday April 11, at Crossroads Community Church, 2658 Old Bergman Rd, Harrison. A private burial in Springdale followed the memorial service.
In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Senior Arkansas Sports Organization (c/o Gail Ezelle), P.O. Box 157, Hot Springs, AR 71902.
Online Guestbook: www.rollerfuneralhomes.com/harrison