News From Terre Haute, Indiana


December 1, 2013

Lee J. Smith

TERRE HAUTE — Not all heroes are created on the battlefield. Every day for 27 years, Lee Smith, 69, of Naperville, Ill., waged a valiant campaign against multiple sclerosis. The disease defeated his body on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013, but never defeated his spirit. Despite his ultimate quadriplegia, he never allowed illness to deprive him of a rich and inspiring life. Lee was born June 13, 1944, in Terre Haute, Ind. In high school he was president of the Temple Youth Group. He also earned a football letter, playing for the Wiley Red Streaks, an undefeated team his senior year. At Indiana University in Bloomington, Lee earned a degree in Business Management (with an uncredited minor in Bobby Knight basketball). In 1966 Lee entered the Eighth U.S. Army. After a stint at Fort Benjamin Harrison in Indianapolis, First Lieutenant Smith served as a Finance Disbursing Officer in Korea. After his discharge Lee created a highly successful sales career in communications. In 1977, he married Mary Jane Bradley and they settled in Naperville. Lee taught her to play racquetball, appreciate antique clocks and enjoy Dewars and soda with a twist. She turned him into an avid horseman and dog lover. They rode their Arabian horses together, cruised, visited Hawaii and the Virgin Islands and toured French Canada. Their son Steven — Lee’s greatest joy and accomplishment — was born in 1985.

After going on disability Lee channeled his energy into his family. He took Steve to White Sox and Bulls games. They relished watching Michael Jordan and Scotty Pippen dominate the NBA. However, it was baseball which caused the first major rift in the family: Steve is a Cubs fan; Lee preferred the White Sox; Mary Jane cheered for both. As his disability worsened, Lee spent more time in physical therapy at Hines VA hospital and volunteered at the PVA (Paralyzed Veterans of America). Lee read history and avidly followed politics; enjoyed going to dinner and movies with Mary Jane; joined Facebook to keep in touch with friends; savored Wiley High School and ZBT fraternity reunions. Lee loved life. He was wryly humorous and valiant in adversity: His family can’t imagine their world without him.  

He will be buried with military honors at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2013, at the Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery, 20953 W. Hoff Road, in Elwood, Ill. Guests should arrive in advance at 9:30 a.m.. A memorial luncheon to follow at the Smith family home, 203 Fiala Woods Court, Naperville. Donations to the Paralyzed Veterans of America, 801 18th St. NW, Washington D.C. 20006, would best honor Lee’s legacy. Arrangements entrusted to Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 44 S. Mill St., Naperville, Ill.. For more information, please call 630-355-0213 or


Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Shahadey, Ferris.jpg Farris Joseph Shahadey

    Farris Joseph Shahadey, 60, of Terre Haute, passed away July 29, 2014, at St. Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis, from complications associated with a brown recluse spider bite.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ringo,John.jpg John L. Ringo

    John L. Ringo, 93, of Brazil, passed away July 29, 2014, at Exceptional Living Center with his family by his side.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Death Notices: Aug. 1, 2014

    • Brookie Dee Flinn

    • Betty Hummer

    • Margaret Jane Littlejohn

    • Douglas Keith Malcom

    July 31, 2014

  • flag.jpg James Eugene Dean

    James Eugene Dean, 75, of Terre Haute, passed away on Monday, July 21, 2014, at his home.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Norris, raymond .jpg Raymond L. Norris

    Raymond Lester Norris, 78, Naples, Fla., passed away Monday, July 28, 2014, at AVOW Hospice, in Naples, after living at home many years with Alz-heimer’s and Parkinson’s

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • Shade,Carrie.jpg Carrie Lucy Shade

    Carrie Lucy Shade, 86, died July 26, 2014, in Indianapolis.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Shahadey, Ferris.jpg Farris Joe Shahadey

    Farris Joe Shahadey, 60, of Terre Haute, passed away July 29, 2014, at St. Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis, from complications associated with a brown recluse spider bite.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Froderman,Douglas.jpg Douglas Wayne Froderman

    Douglas Wayne Froderman, 46, went to be with his father, Wayne, in Heaven on Tuesday, July 29, 2014.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ringo,John.jpg John L. Ringo

    John L. Ringo, 93, of Brazil, passed away July 30, 2014, at Exceptional Living Center with his family by his side.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bates, marian krajewska jp.jpg Marian Krajewska Bates

    Marian Krajewska Bates, 81, of Bloomington, died Friday, July 25, 2014, in I.U. Health, Methodist Hospital.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

Latest News Poll
Front page
AP Video
Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Gaza Truce Unravels; Israel, Hamas Trade Blame Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Today in History for August 1st Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot US, UN Announce Deal on Gaza Cease-Fire LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors
NDN Video
Under Armour Launches Biggest Women's Campaign with Inspiring Ad NYPD chokehold death of Eric Garner was homicide: medical examiner Christina Aguilera Pulls a Demi Moore! Man with no arms throws first pitch Chapter Two: Composing for a film in retirement Is Justin Bieber Dating a Model? Guardians of the Galaxy (Trailer) 'Sharknado 2:' Hottest Memes Surfing The Net Snoop Dogg Narrating Animal Footage Is Perfect Raw: Obama Gets Hug From Special Olympian Recapping a Blockbuster MLB Trade Deadline Tigers Acquire David Price - @TheBuzzeronFOX Russell Brand Slams Sean Hannity Over Gaza Conflict Segment Woman's Dive Goes Terribly Wrong Brian Williams Reports on Daughter Allison Williams' 'Peter Pan' Casting News Did Jimmy Fallon Look Up Heidi Klum's Dress? What Drama? Miranda Kerr Poses Topless Plane crashes in San Diego Costco parking lot Justin Bieber Takes To Instagram To Diss Orlando Bloom You Won't Believe the Celeb Cameos in "Sharknado 2"

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -


    March 12, 2010

Real Estate News