Jim Smith was born March 7, 1925, the son of Stanley and Marie (Walsh) Smith. As a child, he joined with his sister Audrey and his mother to perform as the musical "Smith Kiddies." A winning performance at the Sioux City Orpheum sent them on to perform at the Chicago World's Fair.
Upon graduation from Marcus High School in 1943 Jim served in the 585th Army Air Corps Band. Upon his discharge from the military service, Jim and his father had a successful novelty sales business.
On Feb.19, 1949, Jim married Betty Lang, daughter of Frank and Bessie (Cosgrove) Lang of Remsen. They became the loving and supportive parents of Steve, Patti, and Janice.
Through the years Jim and Betty were strong supporters of music, athletics, and academics in the local schools. Their support and generosity extended not only to their own children but to many other students in the community.
Jim worked at Farmers State Bank before joining Clarence Beck in the insurance business in 1955. Jim became the secretary/manager of Western Cherokee Mutual Insurance in 1965 and served in that capacity until 1990. He also founded Smith Insurance Services and worked as an agent until 2004.
Jim continued his music with his own dance band which played hundreds of weddings, proms, dinner dances, and school events over 30 years. Jim and son, Steve, teamed up in the dance band business in 1965 and became business partners in the insurance agency in 1975.
Jim and Betty spent many hours playing bridge, attending ballgames, and enjoying many hours of golf together. Attending their grandchildren's games and musical performances always came first.
Jim was an avid sports fan of Notre Dame, the New York Yankees, Iowa State Cyclones, MMC, and any school attended by his kids or grandkids.
He was known as generous and kind to family, friends, and his employees. He was a lifelong member of Holy Name Church and served many years as a lay parish director and eucharistic minister.
He is survived by children, Steve Smith and his wife. Linda, of Marcus; daughter Patti and her husband, Gene Cave, of Remsen; daughter Janice and her husband, Jared Frank, of Urbandale. Also surviving are grandchildren, Jennifer Smith Hoesing and husband Pete; Kathy (Cave) Sitzmann and husband Brad; Chris Smith and wife Nina; Brad Cave and wife Sarah; Craig Cave, and Paul Frank. Great Grandchildren are Natalie Sitzmann, Riley Sitzmann, James Grant Hoesing, and Parker Cave.
Jim was preceded in death by his devoted partner, Betty; his parents; sister, Audrey Hush.
Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday at Holy Name Catholic Church in Marcus. The Rev. Armand Bertrand will celebrate Mass. Burial will follow at the parish cemetery with military honors provided by F.I. Goodburn Post #517 of the American Legion. Visitation will begin at 2 p.m. today (Monday) at the Earnest - Johnson Funeral Home in Marcus. A scriptural prayer service will be held at 7 p.m. There will also be one hour of visitation at the church prior to Mass on Tuesday.
Memorials may be directed to the Heartland Care Center and the Marcus Golf Club.
Memories and expressions of sympathy may be directed through www.mauerjohnsonfh.com.