Willis Smith Obituary, Death – On December 6, 2022, Willis Smith, who had reached the age of 80, went to be with his Lord. Willis Smith was born in Oklahoma City on the 22nd of July, 1942. His parents were Louise Julia Smith and Vernon Willis Smith. Willis is survived by his devoted partner of seven years, JoAnn Bryant Smith, as well as stepdaughter Beth Bowman, daughter Shellie Greiner, husband Don, and grandchildren Joe (wife Caroline) and Mary Jesse (fiancé Chris Livernois), as well as sons Jay Smith (fiancé Kristi Rowley) and Ryan Houston Hensley (husband Chase Hensley). Sister Jo Katherine Smith, who was still an infant when she passed away, and grandson Simon Greiner came before him in death.
Willis participated in the activities of Sigma Nu while he was a student at the University of Oklahoma. His sandwich making business at OU eventually grew into selling and delivering hundreds of meals to the various fraternities and dorms on a daily basis. This was the beginning of his career as a serial entrepreneur. After receiving his pharmacy degree, he established Thrifty Pharmacy and Medical Supply. Over time, he expanded the business to include many metro OKC locations, and it eventually became one of the state’s leading pharmacy providers to long term care communities. Following the sale of that business, he established Ariel Group International, an importer of automobile parts and other goods, as well as Golden Goose Antique mall.
Over the past five years, he and his wife JoAnn have been running a business called Eclectix Minerals and Décor. He was an active outdoorsman who went fishing and hunting all over the world. He also enjoyed going skiing with his kids and other friends and family. Willis was a well-respected church leader, scoutmaster, philanthropist, businessman, and family guy. He was also an avid outdoorsman. He was respected for his honest dealings in business and his conscientious approach to his work, and he maintained an active lifestyle right up until the end of his life. Willis was the epitome of the self-made man, fulfilling every definition of the term. He won the hearts of many people, and they will grieve his passing. On Friday, December 9, at 11:45 in the morning, funeral services will be held at Smith and Kernke on North May. In memory of his grandson Simon, you are invited to make a donation in his name to the Fields and Futures Track and Field Program.