A. Lee Smith, 84, of Cartersville, passed into Glory on Thursday morning, April 30, 2020.
Lee was born on February 3, 1936, in Lake Orion, Michigan, where his parents, Horace C. Smith and Daphne Roberts Smith, had moved in search of employment during the Great Depression.
After the outbreak of World War II, Horace found work back home as an auto mechanic and moved the family back to Dalton, Georgia, in 1942. The entire extended Smith family lived within short walking distance of one another, south of Dalton, on the old Dixie Highway. Lee grew up with the benefit of close relationships to both sets of grandparents and a multitude of aunts and uncles. At home, the family had a small farm where Lee was responsible for the daily chores associated with raising hogs and chickens. He attended Valley Point School in Whitfield County from first through twelfth grade, playing the only varsity sport available — basketball. As a teen, he began to help his uncle, Robert Smith, the Whitfield County surveyor, where he developed a love for the land surveying profession. After graduation from Valley Point in 1955, Lee enrolled at Southern Technical Institute, at that time in Chamblee, to study land surveying. Toward the end of the summer of 1956, Lee met a pretty girl, named Gail Ellis, at Head’s pool in Dalton and asked her on a date. They were married 3 months later, on October 5, 1956. The couple moved to Chamblee so Lee could finish college. He graduated in early 1958 and they moved back to Dalton where they bought a small house and had 3 children while Lee worked for the Georgia Highway Department. In 1962, Lee completed his 4-year training period and passed his test to become a Registered Land Surveyor. After obtaining his license, they looked for a good place to open his own land surveying business, and found that Bartow County did not have a local surveyor. In July of 1962, they moved to Cartersville. The Smith family soon joined Tabernacle Baptist Church and have been there ever since. Over the years, Lee has served on many committees and as a deacon, several terms as chairman. In 1964, Lee was elected and many times re-elected, as the Bartow County Surveyor, serving in that office for 38 years. In 1968, things were a bit slow in the surveying business and Lee took a job as the Street Department superintendent and city engineer for the City of Cartersville. He served in that capacity until his brother, Bill, moved to Cartersville with his newly obtained land surveying license in 1972. The two partnered to reopen the land surveying business as Smith & Smith Land Surveyors, where it still is today on South Avenue. Around that time, Lee was invited to join the Cartersville Lions Club, where he found another passion. Over his 40+ years in the Lions Club, he served several terms as club president and one term as district governor. In 1999, Lee retired to spend time with family and projects. He enjoyed retirement and especially enjoyed spending time with his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. By the time of his death, the two had become thirty-three.
A. Lee was preceded in death by his parents, two brothers and a sister. He is survived by his wife of almost 64 years, B. Gail Smith; three children and their spouses, Michael (Chris) Smith, Susie (Ron) Woodward and Sharon (Scott) Mauldin; nine grandchildren and spouses, Matthew (Teri) Smith, Andrew (Rachael) Smith, Thomas Smith, Stephen Smith, Lauren (Matt) Cason, Joshua (Molly) Woodward, Seth (Tiffany) Mauldin, Caleb Mauldin and Levi (Kristen) Mauldin; and ten great-grandchildren.
The family will receive well-wishers in front of Tabernacle Baptist Church in a drive-by procession at noon on Saturday, May 2, 2020. Those wishing to participate in the procession should gather at the Bartow County courthouse parking lot prior to noon. A graveside service will be conducted Saturday, May 2, 2020, at 2:00 pm in the Oak Hill Cemetery with Dr. Tim Smith officiating. Serving as pallbearers will be Matthew Smith, Seth Mauldin, Levi Mauldin, Stephen Smith, Thomas Smith, Matt Cason and Corey McCombs. Family and friends may park at the graveside and stand at their vehicles, abiding by applicable distance regulations. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the World Missions Offering at Tabernacle Baptist Church — www.tabernaclebaptist.org. Please visit www.owenfunerals.com to post tributes and sign the online register. Owen Funeral Home, 12 Collins Drive, Cartersville, GA 30120 has charge of the arrangements.