OBITUARY

Ralph Raymond Smillie

November 23, 1935January 6, 2021
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Ralph Raymond Smillie, age 85, of Indian Trail, North Carolina peacefully passed away on Wednesday, January 6, 2021. Ralph was born November 23,1935 in East Rockaway, NY. He was a proud veteran, serving in the U.S. Air Force. After military duty, he worked as an insurance investgator at Equifax for 30 years.

Ralph loved spending time with his family, swimming, gardening, and baking the most delicious desserts. He was kind-hearted, generous, and always ready to lend a hand. We know he is eating a giant scoop of ice cream and smiling down on us all.

He will be greatly missed by his wife of 35 years Norma Smillie; his children, Barbara Guilfoyle (John), Thomas Bayer (June), Dianne DeNino (Anthony), and Kevin Smillie (Susan). He was adored by his grandchildren, Katherine Guilfoyle (Vince Fuschino), Colleen Schirmer (Kyle), John Guilfoyle (Holly), Jenna Smillie, Meaghan DeNino, Sarah Cowart (Dylan), Christian Gonzalez-Bayer, Kevin Smillie, Noreen Guilfoyle and great-grandchildren, Trent, Ryan and Vincent Fuschino. He was preceeded in death by his daughter, Deirdre Kern (Scott).

The family would like to thank the loving staff at Royal Park of Matthews for their care and support. You are angels on Earth.

A memorial service for Ralph will be held Monday, January 11, 2021 at 11:00 AM at McEwen Funeral Service-Mint Hill Chapel, 7428 Matthews-Mint Hill Road, Mint Hill, NC 28227.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.mcewenminthillchapel.com for the Smillie family.

Services

  • Memorial Service

    Monday, January 11, 2021

Memories

Ralph Raymond Smillie

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Colleen Schirmer

January 13, 2021

There are three things that come to mind that Papa had, and wanted for everyone else. He was always well dressed, even going to work at Home Depot he would have a collared shirt on. As children he spoiled us with new outfits from Penney’s every time we saw him.
He was well fed- not a secret that Papa loved to eat! He shared his passion for food by always making meals, teaching me how to prepare different things in college, I even remember the first time he met Kyle he asked him “where should we eat tonight? Golden Corral?” Nobody could go hungry in his presence and our memories are filled with Papa special ice cream sundaes and delicious sandwiches by the pool.
Third, he was well loved. Of course by his family but also by his coworkers, neighbors and friends. And he loved us all so much in return. Papa was my knight in shining armor when I would “run away from home.” One phone call and he’d be right there, picking me up and preparing the “princess suite” for a night away from my siblings! In college he and Nana would come to visit me just to make sure I was fed and had gas in the car, he was the loudest person cheering at my graduation. I remember him teaching me to make chicken piccata and standing at the stove, he looked over at Nana and asked “isn’t she beautiful?” You could feel the love emanate from him and it is not a feeling that I will ever forget.

Kevin Smillie

January 11, 2021

Kevin Smillie

January 11, 2021

Kevin Smillie

January 11, 2021

Kevin Smillie

January 11, 2021

Kevin Smillie

January 11, 2021

Kevin Smillie

January 11, 2021

Kevin Smillie

January 11, 2021

My father was a man who had a strong belief in the concept of family. He would always go above and beyond any expectation and would never ask for anything in return. He was selfless in nature and was always willing to lend a hand or help out in any way. He was our rock,the foundation for us all. My oldest memory was when I was five and he had a hand puppet by the name of Schultz and he would make this silly voice that had me laughing and smiling from ear to ear. He taught me to swim, to ride a bike, how to throw a bowling ball, to cut the lawn, but most importantly, to always be respectful. What he taught me was priceless and I will always cherish those "lessons of life." To my Dad, I would just like to say Thank you for everything. I will miss you and I love you.

Lana Tannenbaum

January 10, 2021

Remembering Ralph for the kind, caring ways he always showed everyone. He was always there if you needed him and wanted others to be happy. Memories of him taking care of the pool for the young swimmers: children, grandchildren, and our Luke, tending the garden, and making the best Irish Soda bread on the planet...life always seemed better with Nana and Papa. When asked about someone in the family, he always looked straight at you with a smile and had something nice to say. Most of all, it was lovely to watch him watch Norma. He knew how special she was and always had a twinkle in his eye around her. We will be keeping all of you in our prayers. Love, Lana, Fred, and Luke

Katherine Guilfoyle

January 10, 2021

This week our family lost an incredible man, our beloved Papa. We will always treasure the wonderful memories we have of you. Summer vacations with you & Nana were the best- waking up to big breakfasts, days filled with ice skating at the mall or swimming, delicious meals, your ice cream sundaes and always a game of Scrabble. You could win every Scrabble game, but you'd stop to help us if we struggled to find a word and find us points. I'd fake allergies every time we had to head home to NY, but although you knew I was crying, you'd talk about the pollen. You gave the greatest bear hugs and were so kind and generous, running to your truck if anyone ever asked for something that you were out of or didn't have in the kitchen. The one who called me Mona Lisa when I was a gawky 11 year old, who drove like an ambulance driver after my failed backflip head injury, the loudest person in the stands at HS graduation, and cheering me on at college track meets in Charlotte. To make you a grandfather, all I had to do was show up, but you went above and beyond and were Papa, your love and example lives on. When a heart full of love stops beating, that love isn't lost, we take it with us and will try to spread the joy you brought us. Rest in Peace, Papa xoxo

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