Oliver C. Smith

Published 5:25 pm Friday, March 31, 2023

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Oliver C. “O.C.” Smith, 88, of Bainbridge, passed away Thursday, March 30, 2023.

The graveside funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 1, 2023, at Delwood Baptist Church Cemetery with Rev. Neal Hosey, Rev. Doug Hall, and Mrs. Joy Lynn Pollock officiating.

The family will receive friends immediately following the service. Online visitors may sign the guest register at www.bryantfuneralga.com. Memorial donations may be made to Delwood Baptist Church Children’s Program, C/O Janet Brock, 242 Mt. Pleasant Church Road, Climax, GA 39834.

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Oliver Crawford Smith was born December 18, 1934, in Camilla, Ga., the son of Preston & Esther Salter Smith. He attended Mt. Pleasant High School and went on to proudly serve his country with the United States Navy. Oliver married Mary Ann “Evon” Tyre in 1957, and they made their home in Southwest Georgia after twenty or so years in Titusville and Apopka. He retired from Miller Brewing Company, served as a Mason and a Shriner, and was a member of Delwood Baptist Church.

Often described as “the toughest man I know”, Oliver told stories of escapades and narrow misses including breaking nearly every bone in his body at some point. He worked on everything from buildings at Cape Canaveral & Disney World to his golf cart. In his eyes, nothing was beyond repair. He was not afraid to try something once, tell it like he thought it ought to be, or test the limits of age and gravity. Oliver loved farming, especially with a good herd of cattle nearby, watching NASCAR, and college football. He was a die-hard Florida Gator and talked smack with his grandchildren who weren’t. Papa, as he was affectionately known to the grands, giggle as they recall how he answered the phone, “Hey” or “Yeah”. He loved his family and doted on the kids, and that included most any kid. He prepared meals for the church youth on Wednesday night, went on mission trips with those same youth, and supported their other endeavors with his prayers, his presence, and his gifts. Papa’s love language was pecans. He spent hours picking up pecans to give away knowing the fruits of his labor would live forever in the hearts of those he loved.

Survivors include his children, Debra & Jack Mellon of Clearwater Beach, Fla., Brenda Ryan of DeFuniak Springs, Fla., Beverly & Jimmy Cutchens of Bainbridge, and Anna Briggs of Mims, Fla.; his grandchildren, Jay & Lexi, Morgan, Andrew & Melanie, Tim, Ashley, Zac & Lacy, Bradyn, MacKenzie, Lily, Dana & Max, and Christi & Jason; his great-grandchildren, Christopher & Shyla, Landen & Megan, Michaele & Jacob, Chelsey & Tyler, Mercer, Jacey, Lily, Andrew Jr., Aiden, and Summer; his four great-great-grandchildren, Mason, Hartley, Isabella, and Cayle; and his brother, Eddie Smith of Pinetta, Fla. In addition to his parents, Oliver was preceded in death by his wife of 53 years, Mary Ann “Evon” Smith, and his sisters, Mavis Bloom and Vera Hopkins.

Bryant Funeral Home, located at 105 N. Florida Street, is assisting the family with arrangements. (229-246-3321)