Obituary for Paul Richard Smith Sr. - East Idaho News
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Paul Richard Smith Sr.

August 4th, 1949 - May 11th, 2024

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Paul Richard Smith Sr., 74, of Idaho Falls, Idaho, passed away May 11, 2024, in Mesa, Arizona, from complications following a second stem cell transplant for leukemia.

Paul was born August 4, 1949, in Idaho Falls, Idaho, to Jim and Pearl Smith. He grew up and attended schools in Idaho Falls and graduated from Skyline High School. He attended Ricks College, University of New York, Brigham Young University, and University of Utah. He earned an Associate’s Degree in Science from University of New York and a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from Brigham Young University.

On June 24, 1972, he married and was sealed to the love of his life, Karen Signorella, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in the Idaho Falls, Idaho Temple. Because Paul served in the military, they lived in many places including Texas, South Carolina, and Virginia. They welcomed their three oldest children, Paul Jr., Danny, and Jennifer to their family while living at Fort Belvoir in Alexandria, Virginia. While living in Taylorsville, Utah, their youngest child, Julie, was born. In 1987, they moved to Idaho Falls, Idaho, for a work opportunity with the Idaho National Laboratory, and have lived there ever since. The last few years they enjoyed escaping the winter weather in Idaho for the warmer winters in Arizona.

Paul was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He served a mission in Frankfurt, Germany. He held numerous callings in the church and fulfilled each one to the fullest. He enjoyed working as a Temple Baptistry worker. He loved serving others in any way. He enjoyed time with his family, his brothers, and extended family whenever possible. He enjoyed fishing and the outdoors. Within the last few years, he enjoyed playing pickleball.

He served in the United States Army for over eight and a half years. During that time, he received training in mechanics, as a Medic on the ambulance, became a Licensed Practical Nurse, completed the Nuclear Engineering Program, and taught the Nuclear Engineering Program for two years. While he was a LPN in the ER, he received the Commendation Medal, a prestigious military honor.

Paul is survived by his wife, Karen Smith of Idaho Falls, ID; son, Paul Smith Jr. (Deah) of Idaho Falls, ID; son, Danny Smith of Hot Springs, AR; daughter, Jennifer Broberg (Scott) of Pocatello, ID; daughter, Julie Smith (Shawn Bluemel) of Idaho Falls, ID; 12 grandchildren: Warren Smith, Sadie Gee (Riley), Janessa Thornock, Gracie Smith, Kaesen Smith, Raiken Smith, Kendra Broberg, Kristen Broberg, Seth Broberg, AnnaLynn Bluemel, McKay Bluemel, and Margo Bluemel. He is also survived by his brothers, Alan Smith (Pat) of Rigby, ID; Gayle Smith (Ellen) of Salt Lake City, UT; Lynn Smith of Shelley, ID; Craig Smith (Beverly) of Idaho Falls, ID; and many nieces and nephews.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Jim and Pearl Smith, and sister-in-law, Betty Smith.

We will gather to celebrate Paul’s life on Friday, May 24, 2024, at 11:00 a.m. at the LDS church at 1860 Kearney Street in Idaho Falls. The family will meet with friends Thursday from 6:30-8 p.m. at Wood Funeral Home East Side, 963 S. Ammon Road, and Friday from 10-10:45 a.m. prior to services at the church. Burial will be in the Fielding Memorial Park Cemetery. Military Honors will be performed by the Bonneville County Veterans Memorial Team and Idaho Honor Guard.

Condolences may be sent to the family at

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