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Obituary – Frank A. Smotherman, 1943-2013

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Obituary

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Frank A. Smotherman  

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1943-2013

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Frank A. Smotherman, 69, passed away peacefully on Aug. 29, 2013 with his daughter and wife by his side as a result of injuries sustained in a tragic accident at home. 

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He was born on Sept. 13, 1943, in Hazel, Kentucky to J.P. and Lottie Smotherman. He was one of seven children. His family relocated to Detroit, Michigan, where he fell in love with the music of Motown and carried that love of music with him for the rest of his life. He excelled through high school as president of his class, a leader in varsity football and was a state-ranked wrestler. He graduated from Central Michigan University with a degree in business and was honorably discharged from the United States Marine Corps Reserves.

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 After a brief stint living in San Francisco (working a “suit and tie” job) he knew he hadn’t found what he was searching for. In 1969 he borrowed a car from a friend who told him “If it makes it there, you owe me $50. If not, let’s call it even.” As the story goes, the car died just after he arrived in Aspen Colorado. Fate it seems had brought him to his rightful home. 

Frank lived a big and bold life, and quickly found his niche in the vibrant community of Aspen in the late 1960s and early 1970s. He waited tables, cleaned rooms and built homes to fund his skiing and other adventures. He briefly opened Frank’s Playschool, which allowed him to share his love of life and all Aspen had to offer with the next generation.

In 1976, Frank Smotherman and Cindy Sadlowski were married and moved downvalley to settle in Carbondale. Together they opened a local laundromat but found their calling selling real estate all over the Roaring Fork Valley. Through his work, he took pride in helping people find their homes and built many lifelong friendships. Particularly, he held a strong connection with Grace Cowen, a local since the early 1900s, who he helped care for until the day she passed away in 2006.

Frank spent almost 44 years living in the Roaring Fork Valley, and was a well-known man about town. He lived a bright, happy and colorful existence. He hosted a radio show on KDNK, served as a Carbondale trustee and once ran for county commissioner.

In 1986, Frank and Cindy welcomed their only child – Chesca. He was the proudest and most loving father anyone could ever ask for. He shared his great joys in life with her and they had countless adventures together throughout his life. 

He loved to read and attend live music events, and spent countless days at the Glenwood Springs pool. Above all, he loved people. He never forgot a face and took great joy in connecting with friends from all walks of life, both old and new.

He was not a traditional man, and his family feels strongly that a traditional funeral is not the right way to say goodbye. Rather, friends and acquaintances are invited to a celebration of life, which will be held Friday, Sept. 13 (his 70th birthday) in Carbondale at the Third Street Center in the Round Room from 6 to 9 p.m. Please come with stories and memories to share. 

Please contact Chesca Smotherman as needed at 970-618-5909.

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