H.P. 'Hank' Smathers
1923 – 2013
MARS HILL — H. P. “Hank” Smathers, 89, went to his heavenly home Monday, Feb. 25, 2013, at the Mars Hill Retirement Center.
He was born May 14, 1923, to Perry and Jessie Smathers. He was preceded in death by both his parents, his sister, Betty Smathers, and just four months ago by his beloved wife, Aldeen.
Hank managed the Farm Federation in Canton for years then Southern State in Asheville. After retiring he worked for Purolator Courier. This allowed him to enjoy one of his favorite pastimes — driving the beautiful country side in Western North Carolina. He had a passion for sports, especially if it involved the Atlanta Braves or the Carolina Tarheels. He enjoyed sharing his experiences in traveling, in particular stories of their trip to Poland where he found the people to be wonderful. He also loved owning and restoring old cars.
Hank was a gentle and kind man, being a loving and devoted husband. As a couple, they served as an example for all those associated with him and Aldeen as to what a wonderful marriage could look like. Hank and Aldeen loved traveling, he was always quick to help out a charitable cause, and he was a talented weekend carpenter who could tackle most any building project.
He served his country during World War II as a Technician Fourth Grade with Company C 271st Combat Engineers. Hank served in Ardennes, Rhineland and Germany from 1943 to 1946. He loved America and felt honored to uphold her beliefs in freedom. Hank received three Bronze Service Stars, a Victory Medal, an American Theater Campaign Medal and a Bronze Star Medal.
He is survived by sisters-in-law, Luellen (Royce) Costic of Macon, Georgia, and Luetta (Don) Gregg, of Hendersonville; nine nieces and nephews; 18 great-nieces and nephews; and nine great-great-nieces and -nephews; and beloved friend, Rob Thornberry.
Funeral services were held at 3 p.m.Sunday, March 3, at Merrimon Avenue Baptist Church with the Revs. Daniel Dockery and Tom Lomax officiating. Burial followed at Ashelawn Garden of Memories. The family received friends from 1:30 to 2:45 p.m. prior to the service at the church.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Merrimon Avenue Baptist Church, 283 Merrimon Ave., Asheville, NC 28801 or to Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, Kansas 66675.
Special thanks are extended to the staff of Mars Hill Retirement Center and to the HomeWatch Caregivers. They didn’t just care for him, they loved him with their hearts and this was felt by Hank. He considered them his family, as well.
For those who desire, an online memorial register is available at www.wellsfuneralhome.com.