November 30, 1950 - March 12, 2013
Michael J. Smith was blessed with an abundance of leadership qualities. It would be accurate to say that this man was an outstanding luminary and that his natural abilities served him well. He knew with certainty how he wanted to set priorities in all aspects of his life. He struck those who knew him as the kind of person who awoke in the morning with a clear sense of exactly what he expected from his day and how to set about accomplishing those goals. Michael was a man who definitely liked order and was most comfortable with an organized and structured lifestyle. When this climate was absent, Michael would set about immediately to create it.
His parents were Joe and Mary Smith. Michael was raised in Houston, Texas. Michael was brought up to be reasonable in his actions and was taught to use his intellect wisely. He was an honest and straightforward child, traits that reinforced his self-confidence. Even at a young age, Michael was credited with having a positive influence on those around him.
Michael’s enthusiasm for learning and the personal energy that enthusiasm generated led to his exhibiting leadership qualities early on in his childhood. He liked to see things executed properly and showed a skill for taking control of situations that were drifting out of control. At the same time, he was willing to experiment with different approaches as he worked a plan towards a solution. As a young boy, he took part in Baseball. He was a Boy Scout. In his spare time he liked playing baseball with his neighborhood friends.
When it came to academics and school, Michael’s organizational skills reaped dividends. Michael was able to create a system for getting his class work done in a proper and timely manner. With a strong ability to analyze his schoolwork and assignments, he could apply a practical, common sense approach completing his studies. He showed a natural curiosity in the manner in which he tackled new types of problems and would regularly challenge his own reasoning ability in finding solutions. He graduated from Jesse H. Jones High School, Houston, Texas. He enjoyed some courses more than others and developed favorite classes and teachers. Won the Key to the city for his art.
The work habits and approaches to studying that Michael utilized in high school also served him well in college. Michael always seemed on a quest for knowledge. He was able to generalize, summarize and compile information for his classes, employing a matter-of-fact approach. Michael was intuitive and mentally alert, seemed to crave the challenge of solving complex problems. His favorite courses were minored in Psychology and majored in Business. Always wanted to write. He loved cars 442 Ford Mustang. He loved to White Wing Dove hunt in South Texas he also loved fishing.
In a group of friends and acquaintances, Michael was typically the first person to take the initiative to go up and greet someone new. That quality made him very approachable by others throughout his life. This same quality brought Michael the reward of many friends. Maintaining loyalty to those friends was a trait that came naturally to Michael. He believed that he should treat others in a fair manner, in the same way he wanted to be treated. Michael also showed a great deal of appreciation for the accomplishments of his friends. While growing up, some of his best friends were Steve Koster and Ricky Pettit. Later in life, he became friends with Brad Malic, Dean Williams. He was very close to his brother in laws John, Brent, Rusty and Dean.
As Michael knew in other aspects of his life, he had a clear vision of what he sought in a relationship and worked hard to achieve it. On April 24, 1976 Michael exchanged wedding vows with Molly Phillips at St. Thomas Moore of Houston, Texas. Molly was a significant part of his life, and it wasn’t necessary for Michael to be overly sentimental or expressive about it for others to be aware of their mutual devotion. Michael’s secret to success was that he always kept the lines of communication open in the marriage and applied the important skill of being a good listener.
Family and children were important to Michael, even if he didn’t always show it. Michael was blessed with Two, Two sons Joe and Dustin. They were also blessed with One granddaughter, Rian Elizabeth. Michael was able to keep order in the family by using the same efficient and straightforward methods with the family as he did at work. Michael rarely made a scene when it came to discipline. Instead, he was subtle and patient in his dealings when teaching the children right from wrong.
At work Michael was viewed as a natural leader. He could marshal all of the available resources, including personnel and materials, in order to meet virtually any objective. He was great at developing strategies and made maximum progress with little wasted effort. Michael was also adept at uncovering new and more efficient ways of getting things done. He was able to establish and meet objectives and schedules through long range planning and was always able to keep the big picture clearly in sight. Although Michael might have been described by some as an overachiever, he was without question a dedicated and diligent employee. His primary occupation was Millwright. He was employed for twenty years at GB Biosciences and surrounding Plants.
Not only did Michael find pleasure in pursuing his various hobbies, he also enjoyed the discovery and research involved in learning about them. His skill at problem solving had a positive influence on these activities as well. His favorite pursuits were gardening, shooting guns, fishing. He also enjoyed to barbque. He liked family poker games and family basketball games.
No matter what the activity was, Michael had the ability to motivate others. This talent influenced his participation in sports, too. He sought out the possibilities in a competitive situation, and he stayed cool and calm under pressure. He relished the stimulation of the action and energy associated with sports. In high school, Michael played Pole vault. Recreational sports included softball. He was also something of a sports fan and enjoyed following his favorite events whenever he got the opportunity. Tops on his list were Football, baseball and basketball.
Traveling, especially vacations, was another way for Michael to apply his exceptional leadership and organizational skills. He liked exploring different places but also enjoyed designing and scheduling the trips in advance. He had real talent for developing the perfect itineraries. Favorite vacations included Cabo San Lucas on his 30th anniversary. Taking his family to baseball games, Hall of Horns, Guadalupe River. His son wedding in Cancun. Family reunion in Arkansas in 2011. Family holiday gatherings.
Michael was a lover of animals and cherished his pets. One of Michael’s favorites was Michael had two Dachshund’s when he was a child thier names were Snitzel and Ginger. There was also a Blue-Tick Coon Hound named Cody and of course Jake the Boxer with him in Splendora.
When Michael’s retirement finally came in 2012, he was well prepared. He had worked out all of the details well in advance and knew exactly what he was going to do. Always a well-informed person, Michael enjoyed adding to his wealth of knowledge. Retirement afforded him the time to enjoy that experience and provided one more opportunity to look ahead at what life might offer him.
Michael passed away on March 12, 2013 at At home in Splendora, Texas. Michael fought a brave battle against Liver Cancer. He is survived by his wife Molly and two sons Joe and Dustin. Services were held at Darst Funeral Home. Michael was cremated and has come home to be with his family.
Michael J. Smith knew what he wanted from life and never hesitated in going after it. He could be characterized as a driven individual, someone who understood the importance of achievement. Michael was decisive and outspoken at times but was also positive and upbeat about most things. He was a leader, both intentionally and sometimes by default. If he saw that something needed to be done, he was always ready to step up and actualize, organize and implement a plan.
Funeral: A memorial service was held on 2013-03-23 at Darst Funeral Home. Join us in the garden to celebrate his memory.
To express your sympathy with a flower arrangement please contact our florist.