Robert Luther Smathers, age 83, of Albuquerque, New Mexico, departed his earthly home to his eternal home in Heaven, Tuesday, October 5 after a brief illness.
Bob was born December 30, 1937 in Candler, North Carolina to Jennings Byron Smathers and Mary Luther Smathers. Bob spent his entire childhood in Candler where he attended school and met the love of his life, Doris Stockton. Together they created a life grounded on their commitment to the Lord and their love for each other, recently celebrating 62 years of marriage.
Bob is a graduate of North Carolina State University with a degree in Pulp and Paper Technology. His career in the pulp and paper industry spanned many years and included positions in Rome and Macon, Georgia; Pine Hill (Thomasville), Alabama; Madison Heights (Appomattox), Virginia; and Cowpens (Spartanburg), South Carolina. He and his family are blessed to have developed many life-long friends in each of these locations. In retirement, Bob and Doris were residents of Charlotte, North Carolina before moving to Albuquerque.
With every move, Bob and Doris invested their lives in a local church. At the time of death, Bob was a member of Sagebrush Church, Albuquerque, and previous members of Hickory Grove Baptist Church in Charlotte, and First North, Spartanburg. Bob was an ordained deacon, Sunday School teacher and served on various church committees throughout his adult life.
Bob is survived by his wife, Doris Stockton Smathers to whom he was married on June 4, 1959. Other survivors include two sons, Robert Jeffrey Smathers (Tamara) of Rome, Georgia, Michael Jay Smathers (Amanda) of Albuquerque, New Mexico; grandsons, [listed by age] Jonathan (Lauren), Andrew (Erin), and Zander; special brothers-in-law Earl Stockton (Linda) of Mooresville, North Carolina, Larry Stockton (Noriko) of Easton, Pennsylvania ; nieces Karen Sims (Tommy), Suzanne Davis (Joey), Theresa Slater, Rochelle Whiteside, and Linna Early; a nephew, Freddy Earley, two great nieces and a great-great nephew and niece.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Olga S. Earley.
A Celebration of Life graveside service will be held at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, 1498 Sand Hill Rd, Candler, North Carolina. Thursday, October 21 at 1:00 p.m. All family and friends are welcomed to attend and visit with family at the end of the service.
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