Ronald Eugene Smith was born in Paris, Illinois on October 31, 1943. Ron graduated from Young America High School as a member of the Class of ‘61 and attended the University of Illinois. After college, Ron lived his entire life in Hume. Ron attended Hume Christian Church and served on the Hume Fire Department for over fifty years. Ron served as a Trustee for the Village of Hume and Village Clerk for many years.
Ron worked at the Illinois Department of Transportation for 37 ½ years. During his career, he managed road construction projects that made dirt and fields into roads. After his retirement in 1997, Ron enjoyed spending time with his buddies at the gun club and shooting trap. An avid trap shooter, Ron has shot over 300,000 registered targets and introduced his sons, grandsons and granddaughters to the sport. Ron enjoyed the annual breakfasts with the guys from IDOT, driving his white truck, listening to oldies music, and watching the Fighting Illini and the Green Bay Packers. Ron attended as many basketball and football games, wrestling matches, little league games, and cross country meets to cheer on his grandchildren. He was a wonderful and encouraging husband, father, and grandfather and leaves a huge hole in the hearts of his family. He is already greatly missed.
Ron passed away on December 20, 2021 at the age of 78, at Carle Foundation Hospital. Ron is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 57 years, Paula Jones Smith; sons, Shane (Angela) Smith of Hume, Travis (Kelly Burns) Smith of Gibson City; daughter, Jennifer Lush of Champaign; and grandchildren, Jade Lush of Peoria, Cole (Erica) Lush of Gibson City, Shelby (Cody) Bosch of Newman, Sabrina (Stephen) Akers of Villa Grove, Tristan Smith of Gibson City, Shayne Smith of Davenport, IA, and Jacob Smith of Hume; great-grandchildren, Savannah Bosch, Carter Lush and Aubrey Lush; and a brother, Richard (Nancy) Denbo of Hume. Ron was predeceased by his parents, Charles and Marybelle Clark Denbo and Eugene Smith.
A memorial service will be held on Sunday, January 2, 2021 at Joines Funeral Home in Newman. Rev. Aaron Bird will officiate the memorial at 2 pm with visitation to follow until 6 pm.
In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made to the Hume Christian Church, ATA (Amateur Trapshooting Association P.O. Box 519 Sparta, IL 62286), or to an organization of the donor’s choice.