Gerald "Gerry" Smith

April 30, 1936 - September 19, 2022


Obituary For Gerald "Gerry" Smith

Arbor Vitae - Gerald (Gerry) Smith, age 86, of Arbor Vitae, WI passed away on Monday, September 19, 2022, surrounded by his loving family. Gerry was born on April 30, 1936 in Milwaukee, WI to Martin and Catherine Smith. He graduated from Appleton High School in 1954 and St. Norbert College in 1958 with a degree in Business Administration. Gerry was a veteran and proudly served in the Army from 1958 - 1960. He married Dolores (Dee) Schuh on August 17, 1957 and they settled in Wausau, WI to raise their family. Gerry retired in 1991, after 31 years with Wausau Insurance, to a rustic, hand-built, lakeside cabin in northern Wisconsin with Dee. Gerry was an avid runner in his younger years as a way to spend time and connect with his children. He completed 11 marathons, including Boston in 1981. He was a very skilled craftsman: tearing down old houses in Wausau to be recycled into their rustic cabin, creating woodworking projects for children and grandchildren, winemaking, and rock collecting. He imparted hunting and fishing skills to his sons and daughters. Gerry never passed up an opportunity to strike up conversations and share stories with people he met.

Gerry and Dee spent 20 wonderful years together after he retired, surrounded by nature, enjoying gardening, hiking, biking, canoeing, and cross-country skiing. Their passion for nature and adventure led them on many travels, visiting most of the U.S. National Parks. They shared their love of nature with their children and grandchildren while making their cabin a source of wonderful memories for generations of family and friends.

Gerry is survived by four children – Lisa (Keith) Fenhaus of Plymouth, MN; Linda (Valen) Brost of Serene Lakes, CA; Laura (Paul) Martin of Wausau, WI; daughter-in-law Kris Smith of Victoria, MN; and Greg (Teri) Smith of Madison, WI; sister Donna Yaeche; grandchildren – Bethany, Brent, Flene, Zarik, Jesic, Stara, Mriah, Rlija, Sarah, Adam, Megan, Katelyn, Sabrina, Lukas and Katy; 16 great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his beloved wife Dee, parents Martin and Catherine, sister Rose Marie Watson (Chuck), brother-in-law Len Yaeche, brother Jim (Lu) Smith, son Jeff Smith, granddaughter Allison Smith, grandson Jakob Smith, and all the Schuh family brothers and sisters-in-law.

Gerry lived a deep spiritual life and believed family and love for all are what mattered most. He lived out of his heart and hoped that the brightest light within you will sustain you and guide your way forward. A small celebration of life will be held in Wausau at a later date.

To view and sign this guestbook, please visit:

Ryan Funeral Home & Cremation Services Verona Chapel 220 Enterprise Drive 608-845-6625

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  • 10/03/2022

    Our sympathy to Gerry & Dee's family. Gerry interviewed Fred in December 1968 and offered him a job. Gerry was his manager twice in his 32 years at Wausau Insurance. Fred, Gerry, and Jim Kampschroer were members of ASM (Association of Systems Management) and we drove to Madison to attend monthly meetings. Have fond memories of our work and time together. Great sense of humor. I appreciated all the support he gave me over the years. Dee and Jerry were a wonderful couple. Special condolence to Fred's second cousin Paul Martin and Laura.

  • 09/27/2022

    Condolences to the Smith family. Gerry was a great guy. Always appreciated the support he and Dee gave to the cross country and track teams at D C Everest

  • 09/26/2022

    Gerry and Dee were long time friends of ours. We became friends when I came to Wausau to work in the computer area at Wausau Insurance in 1959. Gerry's desk was next to mine. We worked together on several computer projects over the years and our families got to know each other primarily through a "couples club" that met monthly to share food and child rearing experiences. Gerry and Dee were great friends and great people. You have our sincere sympathies He will be much missed by his family and friends. Gary and Marsha Alexander Wausau, WI

  • 09/26/2022

    My sympathy to Gerry's family. I first met Gerry at a job fair when he gave me an application for Wausau Insurance. Gerry was my manager for awhile and we became friends. We car pooled together which gave me time to get to know Gerry. I loved his personality and sense of humor. I am sure he will be greatly missed. Again, my sympathy and condolences to the family.

  • 09/24/2022

    We are sending our heartfelt thoughts and prayers to all of you during this time of sorrow. We have wonderful memories of Gerry and Dee, our backdoor neighbors! Al and Gayl Johnson

  • 09/24/2022

    Thoughts and prayers to all. May all of your memories bring smiles for years to come. Paul and Lori Schuh

  • 09/23/2022

    I love you grandpa! Thanks for sharing your love with for nature with me❤️

  • 09/23/2022

    Thanks for being a great Father, Friend & Mentor! I will forever treasure the wonderful 'family love' that you and Mom surrounded us with, in addition to our own special 1:1 adventures. Onward with your spiritual journey. Love, Greg

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Tiffany Foster went out of her way to fulfill all my requests, talked me through problems I was facing, and tried to make me feel as comfortable as possible when I was a wreck, totally crushed, and I thank her with all of my heart for that.

James S. | July 2020

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