January 12, 1925 — December 29, 2020
On January 12th, 1925, Fred (or Clarence as he was initially known) was born to George and Ruth Dunfee Williams in St. Joe, MO. But it was his adoptive parents, Joe and Iva Smith, who molded and helped him to become one of the funniest, most genuine, kindest, gentle, and most respectful men to all those he met (and also a Fred). Fred was extremely accomplished in many things, a true jack of all trades. He loved building and repairing things, but loved learning how things worked the most. In fact, his most favorite job was helping to design the internal mechanisms for vending machines. This passion of his all began when he studied electricity at Manual High in KC. These ventures eventually led to Fred owning a TV repair shop at the same time as building his basement, adding a second story to his house, as well as extra rooms, updating the plumbing, perfecting the art of stained glass, and anything and everything in between. Please note he did all of these things with simply his two hands and the occasional shovel. When Fred was 18, he answered the nations call and proceeded to take one of the best looking GI portraits known to man. In 1943, he began his tour of duty with the US Army’s 673rd AAA in the Philippines, even fighting in the Battle of Leyte Gulf, and as part of the Occupational Forces in Japan. He returned home in 1946, to his mother Iva, whom he carried her portrait with him every day during the war, and to a girlfriend…or two. In 1950, he met Lila Marie Huckstep and, within 3 months, she made an honest man out of him. Fred and Lila spent the next 45 years, until her death in 1995, building an incredible family. First came Mark (’52), then came Craig (’54), and finally a baby girl, Penny (’61), survived by all three. The years that followed showed a man discovering his love of Hawaiian shirts, cruises, banana cream pies, root beer floats, dominos, and dad jokes. While he absolutely loved being a dad, becoming a grandad and eventually a great grandad was something he truly cherished in this life. Mark, with his wife Cindy, gave Fred 3 grand babies: Adam, Meghan (preceded Fred in death), and Tara. Craig would give him an additional 2 grand babies: Micah and Rachel. And Penny, with her husband Chuck, would complete the family for a time with the birth of 3 grand babies: Alyssa, Jeremy, and Matt. Great grand babies would follow… Alyssa, with her husband Jake, would have Daxton and Jenna. Micah, with his wife Mandi, would have Jacob. Rachel, with her husband Eric, would have Everette. And finally, Adam, with his wife Carmen Nicole, would have Luke. Thus, the family was complete for a short time. Fred slipped away in his sleep on Tuesday, December 29th, warm in his bed. He lived a life full of adventures and impacted the lives of every single person who knew him. He lived. And will live on within us. The celebration of Fred’s incredible life will be Monday, January 4th at Cullen Funeral. Visitation will begin at 12:00pm with service to follow at 1:00pm. His interment will be at Memorial Park Cemetery, Kansas City, Missouri .
The celebration of Fred’s incredible life will be Monday, January 4th at Cullen Funeral. Visitation will begin at 12:00pm with service to follow at 1:00pm. His interment will be at Memorial Park Cemetery, Kansas City, Missouri .