Lawrence Smith ’74
Dr. Lawrence R. Smith, 68, of West Olive passed away July 9, 2020 at his home.
Larry graduated from Wadsworth High School in Ohio. He served his undergraduate at Hope College in Holland, MI before returning to Ohio to attend The Ohio State University Medical School. Larry completed his internship and residency in emergency medicine at Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids, MI, before becoming the first board certified ER doctor in Holland, MI.
He recruited some of his colleagues to join him and established Emergency Physicians Incorporated which contracted with Holland Hospital. He practiced there from 1978 to 1998.
In 1998 Larry and his wife Marti, their two youngest daughters, Samantha and Sarah answered God’s call to mission and humanitarian work in Central Asia. There the family became immersed in family and culture and Larry helped establish World Hope international of Azerbaijan.
At the start of their third year in Central Asia Larry was diagnosed with Huntington’s Disease, and as a result, left the mission field in December of 2000 to return to the United States.
Larry accepted brief employments at Mercy Hospital in Muskegon and later Spectrum Hospital of Zeeland. Eventually he left emergency medicine and practiced at Intercare Community Health Network in Holland until his retirement in 2013.
Larry met his wife Marti at the Holland Hospital Emergency Department working together in the ER for many years before marrying in 1987. Larry was preceded in death by his parents Robert and Jean Smith, his brother Richard Smith, and a nephew Nathan Smith.
Larry is survived by his wife of 33 years, Marcia (Marti) Smith and daughters: Wendi Folkert of Lake Stevens, WA, Amanda and Mark Jones of Las Vegas, NV, Alison Smith and Chris Fiore of Frazier Park, CA, Meredith (Smith) and Rob Ravinsky of Scottsdale, AZ, Samantha and Jason Grimes of Pax River, MD and Sarah Smith of Denver, CO; sister: Susan Kranstuber of Dublin, OH; parents-in-law: Ed and Donna Wolters of Grand Haven; brother-in-law: Scott and Sandy Wolters of West Olive; sister-in-laws: Kathi and Kurt Haveman of Hudsonville and Mary and Jeff Faber of West Olive; many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Larry loved his God, his family, and running. Side by side Larry and Marti served the Lord. Larry as a physician, Marti as a nurse, they served at Central Wesleyan Church, long term missions in Central Asia and short term in the Dominican Republic with Mercy Ships, in Haiti, Istanbul, Kosovo and Zambia.
As a husband, father, and a physician, who prayed with his patients, Larry lived his faith boldly. His kindness and compassion were apparent to all who knew him.
Larry’s love of running took him to a total of 15 marathons in three countries, the United States, Canada and France. He ran multiple shorter distances through- out Michigan.
He also enjoyed downhill and cross- country skiing, camping and being on the water with his family.
Larry was skilled working around the house including some fine woodworking and tiling.
And he was an avid Chicago Cubs and Ohio State Buckeyes fan.