On Sunday, March 1, 2020, Mr. Stanley “Stan” D. Smart, age 95 of Grand Haven passed away peacefully surrounded by his loving family. He was welcomed by our good Lord and Savior and many friends and family who preceded him in death as he embarked on his new journey. Stan was born on January 18, 1925 in Sault Saint Marie, MI, the youngest of five children, to the late Wesley and Ethel (Stanaway) Smart. Stan married Janet Louise Gibbs on March 15, 1991 in Hudsonville, MI. She preceded him in death on December 31, 2014.
Upon graduation from high school, Stan proudly served his country in the US Air Force as a Radio Operator Mechanic Gunner from 1944 to 1946, during World War II. He received the American Theater Service Medal and Good Conduct medal and was honorably discharged, reaching the rank of Sergeant. Stan then obtained his Bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University and became owner and operator of the Shell Gas Station in Spring Lake, which he eventually sold to good friend and business partner, Vic Vipond. He also assisted in running the Fruitport Dairy Delite with his first spouse, Marion Smart, for many years. Stan then went on to complete his Master’s degree in Education from Grand Valley State University and worked as a speech pathologist for Ottawa Area Intermediate School System until his retirement.
Stan loved to travel and have different adventures. He and Jan went on several cruises, however, they loved the Alaskan adventure the most and went two more times. Stan was a founding member and Past President of the Spring Lake Boosters Club, a member of the VFW, and member of the American Legion Charles A. Conklin Post 28, where he was a founding sponsor in the development of the Sons of the American Legion and also served as head of the Grounds Committee for several years.
Stan was a true believer in a healthy lifestyle. He was an avid runner who loved the outdoors and would also snowshoe, cross country ski, and tube on the river. Even into his late 80’s, Stan would walk the track at the elementary school, and would show his one handed push-up to anyone who asked to see it. He was MSU all the way and enjoyed watching sporting events in person and on the television. Many of Stan’s children participated in and/or coached sports and he would often be found cheering on the sidelines. Stan also celebrated the accomplishments of his grandchildren and he always attended their sporting events, band concerts, dance recitals, and graduations.
Stan is survived by six children: Steven P. (Nancy) Smart of Spring Lake; David M. Smart of Grand Haven; Kathie A. (Ross) Klages of Mason, MI; James P. (Catherine) Smart of Manton, MI; Daniel J. Smart of Grand Haven; and Debra K. (Steve) Tober of Spring Lake; step-children, JoAnn (Glen) Guthrie and David (Kristi) Boomgaard, both of Grand Haven; 17 grandchildren; three step-grandchildren; and 14 great-grandchildren, with two more on the way; and several in-laws, nieces, and nephews.
Stan was preceded in death by his first wife and mother of his children, Marion V. (Turner) Smart on December 6, 2014; as well as two brothers and two sisters.
The Memorial Service for Stan will be held and announced at a later date. Interment will be at Lake Forest Cemetery.
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