George Fredrick Smysor was a very special man who lived for 77 years from 1922 to 1999. Married for 56 years, the father of one, grandfather of three, and great grandfather of one, he was a devoted husband and family man. He spent the last 25 years of his life in the state of FloridaŚ23 years in Fort Myers and the last two years in Stuart. Prior to that he lived in Boulder, Colorado for 26 years. He also resided in the states of California, Oregon, Washington, and Illinois at various times during his earlier years. George was born in Canton, Illinois, the third child of Edwin Carrol Smysor(1892-1969) and Edna Pearl Hall (1898-1997). He grew up with two older brothers Laverne Emerson (1917) and Dorance Orville (1919-1998) on a small farm in Illinois. Life during the great depression was hard and helped to shape his values of hard work and living life to the fullest. He left high school in 1938 to work full-time on the family farm. A few years later he met his wife-to-be Wilma Ruth Florea (1922). They were married on March 27, 1943 in Palmyra, Missouri. One year later they gave birth to their only child, Judy Kay.
In 1948 the Smysor family settled down in Boulder, Colorado where Ruth worked as a cosmetologist and George worked a variety of jobs including a instrument technician at the nearby Rocky Flats facility, an auto mechanic, and barber. He also worked many part time jobs from plowing the city streets to watch and clock repair. His many hobbies included raising horses, gardening, geology and gemology, square dancing, and exploring the Colorado mountains. He was also an avid fisherman and hunter. He loved the outdoors, high adventure, and to tinker with all things mechanical. Most of all he loved people and especially enjoyed the fellowship of his brother Masons at Boulder Lodge #45.
The family worked hard and prosperity soon came as they moved from a small trailer to their dream home that George built in 1951. The fifties were good years for the Smysor family as Judy grew up, her parent's pride and joy. Deep inside she was always Daddy's little girl. He was a loving father who spent a lot of time with Judy teaching and encouraging her as she grew up. During this time Ruth set up her own beauty salon business in Boulder, and with hard work the business flourished. Then in 1961 Judy married Verlin S. Norris (1940) and moved out to start a family of her own. Soon thereafter, George and Ruth became proud grandparents, and the love and attention they gave to Judy was magnified many times onto their three grandchildren: Toby (1962), Steven (1963), and Deborah (1967).
The prosperity of the Smysor family continued through the sixties. The beauty shop business and rental properties did very well. George got his pilot license and purchased a small Cessna airplane which he used for pleasure and volunteer work for the civil air patrol. They spent their leisure time square dancing, traveling around the United States, and visiting with their daughter's family. They enjoyed good health, prosperity, and the American dream having come from the depths of poverty and the great depression to being successful business owners.
In the early seventies the Smysors traveled throughout the United States in their big motor home. Their travels eventually took them to Florida where they decided to live when they retired. They finally made the move in 1975, and settled in the city of Fort Myers. Ruth continued her cosmetology career and their prosperity continued throughout the seventies and eighties. During this time they saw their grandchildren grow up and start their own families. In 1988, their granddaughter blessed them with a great granddaughter, Tawnya.
In 1997 as their health and strength declined the Smysors moved to Stuart, Florida to be nearer to their daughter's family in Hobe Sound. In the Summer of 1999 George was diagnosed with terminal cancer. The cancer had already spread through much of his body. Hoping to extend his life as much as possible he underwent painful chemo therapy and radiation treatments. Unfortunately, the treatments did not help. He died later that year at his home in Hobe Sound at the age of 77.
George Smysor was a kind and generous man who liked to help people. He knew how to bring a smile to anyone's face, and his smile and laugh will be forever missed by those that knew him. He was the type of man that the more you got to know him the more you got to love him, and the more you were away from him the more you would miss him. While he had many talents as a mechanic, builder, carpenter, etc., his greatest talent and contribution is the everlasting imprint of love he has left on the hearts of his family and the many loved ones he has left behind.