Elmo L. Smiley, age 98, of the Hiawatha Forest, died Thursday evening, June 17, 2021 at UPHS Marquette following a brief illness. He was born in New Harmony, Indiana on August 28, 1922 to Edward and Bertha (Johnson) Smiley. Elmo graduated from New Harmony High School and worked the Wabash River on the river boats. He served in the U.S. Army during WWII in the European African Middle Eastern Theater from December 11, 1942 until November 18, 1945. Elmo was a member of the 101st Airborne and the 321st Glider Field Artillery Battalion, Company B. He was involved in battles and campaigns at Normandy where he landed on Utah Beach during D-Day, Ardennes, Rhineland, and Central Europe at the Battle of Bastogne and Holland. Elmo was awarded the EAME Theater Ribbon with four bronze stars, a Bronze Star, Distinguished Unit Badge, and the WWII Victory Medal. Elmo returned from the War and went to work for the Inland Steel Corporation in 1954. He married Louise Cannady in January of 1958 and together raised their three children. In 1977, the family moved from the Chicago area to Dana Lake. Elmo retired from Inland Steel in 1980 as Chief Engineer. His career on the Great Lakes iron ore ships were spent on the E.J. Block and Joseph L. Block. Early in his retirement, Elmo served as Chief Engineer for the U.S. Naval Sealift Command on the T-AGOS and sailed around the world. When he retired for real, he and Louise enjoyed their time and home in the Hiawatha Forest. Elmo served as Fire Chief for many years on the Tri-County Fire Department. He enjoyed gardening, raising chickens, and inventing projects at home.
Elmo is survived by his wife of over 63 years – Louise Smiley of Wetmore; their children – Lyn (Tom) Randolph of Portage, IN, Sandy Smiley of Wetmore, and Roger Smiley of Escanaba; grandsons – Jason, Tyler, Joshua, and Matthew; and great-granddaughter – Courtney. He was preceded in death by his parents, granddaughter Julie, and siblings Leonard, Genevieve, and Edward.
Private family services will be held. In lieu of flowers, memorials in his name are requested to be made to the Tri-County Fire Department (N384 FF Highway 13, Wetmore, MI 49895.)
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Tri County Fire Department
N384 FF Highway 13, Wetmore MI 49895