February 25, 1936 - January 16, 2019
Our wonderful and loving father Claude Eugene Smith has found peace and went on to see his heavenly Father. Claude Eugene Smith was born in Mount Hermon, Louisiana on February 25th 1936.
He is preceded in death by his mother, Dorothy Aline (Wilkes) Smith and father, Wilson Eugene Smith. He will be met at Saint Peter’s gate by his two grandsons whom he will finally be able to once again hug and hold; Travis Wayne Vicknair and Charles Jacob (Jake) Kirkland. What a joyous moment it will be.
Claude spent his early years working on his family farm and picking up milk in the surrounding area. Upon graduating Mt. Hermon High School, Claude then went on to box as a middleweight for 2 years at Louisiana State University. Claude married his High School sweetheart Bettye Lou Holiday on August 10th 1956. Claude worked at multiple things until he found his calling with Brown & Root and started a 38 year career building bridges throughout Southeast Louisiana and working in the refineries as well.
He is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 60+ years, Bettye Lou Smith, who has been with him throughout the many years of marriage, both good times and bad. Claude will also leave behind his daughters, Sandy Smith Vicknair, Cheryl Smith Braud – wife of Michael Braud, and his son, Ronnie Eugene Smith, husband of Michele (Heller) Smith. He had dedicated his life to his grandchildren Krystle Vicknair, Reeve Kirkland, Corinne Kirkland, Abigail Smith, Ryan Smith and his one great grandchild, Waylyn Vicknair. He will be deeply missed by his two siblings Martha Alford-wife of Pete Alford and Walter Smith-husband of Diane Wine and his special uncle Fleet Smith Junior with whom he has built a lasting and enduring relationship throughout the years as well as his many nieces and nephews.
Claude Smith will have visitation at McKneely Funeral Home, 501 Avenue G, Kentwood, La. on Monday January 21st from 10 am until religious services at 12 Noon where we will then proceed to Mount Hermon Cemetery for a farewell service and his final resting place here on Earth.