James “Jim” Thomas Smith, 81, formerly of Benton, died May 23, in Kaufman, Tex.
Mr. Smith was born in Benton on Sept. 25, 1931 to James Manson and Zelma Smith. He married Ruth Whitted on Sept. 25, 1949. Mr. Smith worked for Walters Drilling Co. in Benton for many years before transferring to the company’s Dallas office in 1967. He later worked for Southwestern Laboratories in Arlington as a driller and drilling supervisor until his retirement in 1987.
Mr. Smith was a Mason and a member of New Hope Methodist Church in Benton. He loved fishing, the outdoors, NASCAR and keeping friends and families in stitches with outrageously funny stories and jokes. Above all he loved his family.
He was preceded in death by his sister, Johnnie Sue Lindsey.
Survivors include his wife of 63 years Ruth Smith of Kaufman; a daughter, Susan Watterson of Plano and husband Tim; a son, James Thomas Smith Jr. of Eustace and wife Renay; four grandchildren, Josh Smith of Eustace and wife Shannon, Erin Stripling of Bullard and husband Wes; Kerri Dodson of Corsicana and husband Sean; and Angela Watterson of Mansfield; four great-grandchildren, Jake and Kaelyn Stripling of Bullard and Colton and Jordan Dodson of Corsicana; and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews and a host of friends.
Services are scheduled for 2 PM on Monday, May 27, at Roselawn Memorial Chapel in Seagoville, Texas. Visitation will be 2 hours prior to service time.