Steven Smith


Steven Charles Smith, age 90, was called to his heavenly home on July 7th, 2023.

Born July 9th, 1932 to parents Julius and Mary (Fahey) Smith in Sioux City Iowa, Steve was the seventh child in a family of 12 children.  He graduated from Heelan High School in 1951 where he was an avid basketball and football player.

Steve proudly served his country, with two years in the Navy Reserve while in high school and then four years with the United States Air Force. He loved telling stories of his time spent at Laon Air Base in France.  The stories were more about the people he met and the fun things that happened than his actual service duties.  He had a quick wit and knew how to have a good time wherever he was.

Steve married the love of his life, Helen Jean Grathwohl, on January 28th, 1956 at St. Frances Catholic Church in Rochester, MN.  Together they raised five children.  Cynthia Dempsey of Polson, MT; Mark (Angie) Smith of Rochester, MN; Constance (Timothy) Sokol of Rochester, MN; Dr. James Smith of Hammond, LA; and Steven (Nicole) Smith of Rochester, MN.  He thoroughly enjoyed the company of his children, as well as his nine grandchildren and seventeen great-grandchildren.  He was also a surrogate “Grandpa” to others who loved him.  He was happiest when holding a baby in his arms and they always seemed so calm under his gentle touch.

Steve was a dedicated 30 year employee of IBM from 1957 to 1987.  He was an avid golfer, and upon his retirement, he enjoyed many rounds on the course with family and friends, especially with his sons Mark, Jim and Steve.  He played on the Soldiers Field Senior League, making a hole in one on number eleven!  Upon moving to The Waters on Mayowood, he was always rounding up his buddies for an afternoon of playing pool.  With his love by his side, he enjoyed watching the Minnesota Twins, the University of Minnesota Gopher basketball, and all Big Ten basketball and football games. He traveled many miles in his well maintained Buicks, as the number one fan of any activity that his kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids participated in.  He was so present and involved and win or loose, always took great pride in each of us.

Preceding Steve in death was his wife of 67 years, Helen Jean, his parents, his siblings; Jackie, George, Mary, Elizabeth, Don, Joe, Mike, Connie, Barbara, Peggy, Sandra; and great grandson Neomiah Dempsey.

A celebration of life mass for Steven Charles Smith will be held Monday, August 7th at 10:30 AM at Pax Christi Catholic Church. Come visit and share your favorite memories of Steve with his family 30 minutes before the service, then join us for lunch after. A private burial will be held at a later date.

Life won’t be the same without you Papa, but you remain in our hearts and we can almost hear you from the heavens above, cheering us on as we go forward.  We thank you for giving so much of yourself to us. We are blessed with so many happy memories.  One final thing we want you to be proud of, is that we are loving and leaning on each other and finding peace in knowing that you and mom are together again. And yes, you are “prit-near perfect”. We love you both always and forever.  Until we meet again, happy trails to you!

Rochester Cremation Services is honored to serve the family. Memories and condolences of Steve may be shared at

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