Cover photo for David Smalley's Obituary
David Smalley Profile Photo
1937 David 2022

David Smalley

July 13, 1937 — August 2, 2022

David was born on July 13, 1937, in Toledo, Ohio.  He had two older brothers, Ned and Jack.  Due to his father’s ill health, it was necessary for the family to move to the small town of Ohio City, Ohio.  David’s school years were spent in the Ohio City Liberty school—all 12 grades in one building!

During his sophomore hear, he was diagnosed with bulbar polio and hospitalized in the polio unit in Lima, Ohio.  Everyone in the little community soon heard about his plight, and every church in town had people praying for his recovery.  For two days, he was unable to swallow anything because his muscles were paralyzed.  To the doctor’s amazement, he was able to eat breakfast the next morning.  After examining him, they determined that he had developed different swallowing muscles!  The article in the newspaper termed it a “miraculous healing!”  The entire community praised God for His mercy.

David attended Bowling Green State University in Ohio where his interest in drama led to many appearances in the university theater productions and in summer theater at Huron Playhouse.

After receiving his bachelor’s degree, he taught school in Willard, Ohio; Holbrook, AZ; and Phoenix, AZ.  While visiting a friend in Las Vegas, he became aware of the need for a drama instructor at Basic High School in Henderson for the next year.  He moved to Henderson, and met new teacher, Jolene Deardorff, and two years later they were married.  In 1972, they welcomed their son Paul to the family.  In 1978, they moved to their new home in Boulder City.

In 1982, they hosted an exchange student from Mexico, Luz Teran, who became a true daughter in the family.  In 1987, they hosted a young man from Austria, Franz Mittermayr, for a semester.  Both of these “adopted” children have kept in touch and visited the family since their return home.

David continued to be active in his church and do skits and tell stories at the Christian summer camp they often attended.  He served as scout master, helped Paul earn his Eagle Scout rank, and took many boys to Boy Scout summer camp.

He directed plays at Basic for many years.  Through his influence, many students learned to appreciate, enjoy, and become involved in the performing arts—some even professionally.  It brought him great joy to hear about their teaching drama, acting in productions, working backstage, directing, producing, and just enjoying theater.

After retiring from full-time teaching, David enjoyed substitute teaching at Basic and Boulder City high schools, oil painting, working in his yard, and doing some traveling.  He also spent 2 years at Charis Bible College in Arizona and finished the course with a mission trip to the Dominican Republic.

Following an unexpected diagnosis of stage 4 cancer, David bid Jolene, Paul, and Jackie farewell and went home to be with his Lord Jesus on August 2, 2022.  He will be forever remembered as a kind, loving, and gentle man of God.

Instead of flowers, donations may be made to Basic Academy of International Studies drama program c/o Michael Calkins, 400 Palo Verde Drive, Henderson, NV 89015 or your favorite charity.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of David Smalley, please visit our flower store.

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