Obituary of Charles Smith

Charles Wesley Smith, 95, of Fort Scott, passed away Wednesday afternoon September 16, 2020 at Medicalodge. He was born April 27, 1925, in Devon, Kansas, the son of William George and Bertha Mae (Sauerwein) Smith. He married Ruth Irene Johnston on July 16, 1950, and she preceded him in death in 1988. He married Maxine Louise Kinney on April 30, 1990, and she survives. Charlie and Ruth lived in Louisburg, Kansas from 1950 until 1955, and then Winfield, Kansas. Charlie moved to Fort Scott in 1990. He and Maxine have lived in Fort Scott since 1990.

Charlie graduated from Fulton High School in 1943 and entered Fort Scott Junior College in 1946. He received his Bachelor’s Degree from Kansas State University in 1950, and his Master’s Degree from Colorado State University in 1967.

Charlie was the Vocational Ag instructor at Louisburg High School from 1950-1955 and started the first Louisburg FFA Chapter. He worked for the Kansas Extension Service and was the Cowley County Extension Agent from 1955 until 1988.

He served and held office in a number of organizations. He was a board member for the National County Agents Association, was Director of the NCAA North Central Region covering 12 states, Chairman of the NCAA National Scholarship Committee. He served as President, Vice President, and Secretary for the Kansas County Agents Association and was also Board Director for the Kansas State University Ag Alumni.

Charlie received numerous awards and recognitions including Epsilon Sigma Phi State Distinguished Ag Service Award, Epsilon Sigma Phi Meritorious Service Award, National Association of County Agents Distinguished Award, Kansas State 4-H Award, and was both the Jaycee Community Man of the Year and Kiwanis Layman of the Year.

He was active in the First Christian Church of Winfield, Kansas and was also an active member of First Presbyterian Church of Fort Scott, Kansas. He taught high school age Sunday school classes, and he taught Bible study classes in the Southeast Kansas Regional Correctional Center. He also volunteered at Mercy Hospital. He and Maxine received the Award of Merit from the Fort Scott City Commission.

Charlie is survived by his three children David Smith of Lawrence, Kansas, Dennis Smith and wife Carol of Louisburg, Kansas, and Sandra Bowzer and husband Greg of Omaha, Nebraska; four grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; two sisters, Georgia Mae Hill of Hot Springs Village, Arkansas, and Ann Simonsen of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; a step-daughter, Judy Kinney Hunter and husband Bill of Platte City, Missouri; a step-son, Doug Kinney and wife Lynn of Manhattan, Kansas; three step-grandchildren, and three step-great-grandchildren. In addition to his first wife Ruth, Charlie was also preceded in death by his parents, and a brother, William Smith.

Rev. Dr. Jared Witt will conduct graveside services at 1:00 p.m. Tuesday, September 22, 2020, at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Winfield, Kansas, under the direction of the Konantz-Cheney Funeral Home. Memorial contributions may be made to Heifer International and may be left in the care of the Konantz-Cheney Funeral Home, 15 W. Wall St., P.O. Box 309, Fort Scott, KS 66701. Condolences may be submitted to the online guestbook at

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