Richard "Rick" Smathers, Jr.

March 27, 1951 ~ January 24, 2024 (age 72) 72 Years Old

Richard "Rick" Smathers, Jr. Obituary

             Richard D. "Rick" Smathers, Jr.,  72, of Venus, Pinegrove Township, passed away Wednesday afternoon, January 24, 2024 at his home, surrounded by his family. 

            He was born in Oil City on March 27, 1951 to the late Richard D. Smathers, Sr. and Clara L. (Greer) Smathers. 

            He was a 1969 graduate of Cranberry High School. 

            Rick was very active with the Cranberry American Legion Baseball Association, holding an office with the organization, as well as managing and coaching baseball teams over the years.  He loved spending time at the ball field.  He was instrumental in revitalizing the Harvest Home Association in Venus as a Cub Scout leader.   In doing so, he reintroduced American Legion Baseball to the area and would later be inducted into the American Legion Baseball Hall of Fame. He was also a longtime member of the Fryburg Sportsman Club.

            Rick enjoyed hunting, traveling, and going on outdoor adventures riding his side by side.  He had a love for animals, especially stray cats, and his favorite cat Rocket. Rick will be remembered for his unique sense of humor and always making people laugh! 

            Mr. Smathers was employed by Venus Telephone Company as a lineman for 28 years, retiring in 2009.  Prior to that, he worked at Quaker State Refinery in Emlenton.

            He was married in Venus in November of 1981 to the former Desiree (King), and she survives, along with their son, Kellen Smathers and his wife Amanda, and their daughter, Teyla, and their triplet sons, Kanan, Orin, and Quinton. 

            Also surviving is his sister, Marsha Stewart of Eighty Four, PA; three nephews: William Stewart III and his wife Lynda and their children, Neil Stewart and his wife Lynette and their children, and Evan Stewart and his wife Jade and their children; his father-in-law, Albert King of Knox; two sisters-in-law; and one brother-in-law. 

            He was preceded in death by his parents, Richard and Clara Smathers; and his mother-in-law, Shirley King. 

            In accordance with his wishes, there will be no public visitation or service held.  A Celebration of his Life will be held for family and friends at a later date. 

            Funeral arrangements are being completed by Hile-Best Funeral Home in Seneca. 

            In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Precious Paws (Animal Rescue), 720 Atlantic Ave., Franklin, PA  16323.

            To express online condolences to Rick's family, visit

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