DeVerne Smith

    DeVerne R. Smith of Port Washington was born in the wrong century, his daughter Mindi Sharbuno said.
    He loved the idea of living off the land, she said, and enjoyed going to re-enactment events. He even had a buckskinner’s outfit that he and his wife had made.
    “He had the whole getup,” his daughter said. “He was definitely born in the wrong century.”
    Mr. Smith loved the outdoors, especially fishing and hunting, she said, adding he passed that passion on to his family.
    “He absolutely loved fishing anywhere, inland or on Lake Michigan,” his daughter said. “He liked the peace of it, but he also liked the thrill of the fish fighting on the hook.
    “We did a lot of fishing together,” she added, recalling one time when she was a child and they went on a fishing trip where she caught 33 fish and he caught only one.
    “He took my pole,” she said.
    Mr. Smith also loved to hunt, particularly birds and deer.
    “I don’t remember him getting a deer,” she said.
    He and his brother also took a hunting trip to the South, where he got an Angora ram, she recalled.
    Mr. Smith died Friday, May 17, at Aurora Medical Center, Washington County in Hartford. He was 75.
    He was a native of West Bend, born on Jan. 8, 1944, to Robert and Dorothe Field Smith.
    He attended local schools and, while working as a dishwasher at the former 57 Drive-In in the Town of Grafton, met a waitress named Diane Schwengel.
    The couple married on Sept. 11, 1965, at the Jackson Street home of the bride’s mother Dolly Schwengel in Port Washington.
    The couple lived on Theis Lane in Port Washington.
    Mr. Smith “was a character,” his daughter said. “He was a funny guy.”
    He worked as a security guard in Milwaukee, then in the factory at Trak International in Port Washington for many years.
    He held part-time jobs in the area after retirement.
    He later obtained an explosives permit from the state and worked for a fireworks company, setting off the pyrotechnics for local events, his daughter said.
    “He really liked that,” she said.
    Mr. Smith loved nature and collecting rocks.
    “He really enjoyed their colors and researching them,” his daughter said.
    He also collected police and fire department patches, eventually donating them to the Firehouse Restaurant in Saukville, where they line the walls of the bar, his daughter said.
    “He had a ton of them,” she said. “When he traveled, he would stop at the police and fire departments and ask, ‘Can I get a patch?’ He would keep asking until they gave him one.”
    Mr. Smith is survived by his daughter Mindi Sharbuno, grandchildren Kristi Pinter, Kyle Sharbuno, Kyler Smith, Joshua Smith and Austin Smith and six great-grandchildren.
    He is further survived by his brother Lee (Rita) Smith of Ethridge, Tenn., and sister Tammarra Flouro of De Pere.
    In addition to his wife, who died on Dec. 30, 2017, Mr. Smith was preceded in death by his son Kory and his parents Robert and Dorothe Smith.
    A celebration of Mr. Smith’s life will be held at 3 p.m. Monday, June 3, at Open Door Bible Church in Port Washington. The Rev. Jim Engelman will officiate.
    Visitation will be at the church from 1 to 3 p.m. June 3.
    In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested.
    Funeral arrangements are being handled through Poole Funeral Home/Crematory in Port Washington.

 

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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
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