Delbert Dean Smith
Born in Windsor, IL
9th of 12 children to William & Mary Smith, Farmers
After graduating from high school he worked for Caterpillar Tractor in Decatur IL as a mechanic.
Joined the Navy after WWII began. Like all young men he wanted to go overseas to fight. Instead he became a flight instructor at the Naval Air Station in Pensacola FL.
Married June L. Smith (yes, Smith was her maiden name) on 03/24/1940
Had a son, Larry and a daughter, Vicki.
After the war they returned to Illinois but not to the farm, they settled in a small farming community of 900 named Ridgefarm not far from the Indiana state line. He took over a business of delivering fuel oil (heating oil) to the townfolk and farmers. He drove a truck from his storage yard around the county, year round, sun, rain or snow. Hard work.
In 1956 he wanted more for his family so they moved west to Riverside CA. On Sept 11, they arrived (on his precious daughter's birthday!) to start a new life.
He worked several jobs while studying for his life insurance license. Like a lot of Life insurance salesmen at that time he went from door to door after running out of friends and relatives! He soon also obtained his Property & Casualty license. He worked in an agency before starting his own in 1963. He opened Del Smith Insurance Agency near March AFB and specialized in auto insurance coverage for the military. He went on to include motorcycle, homeowners, business and life insurance.
He retired in the late '70s after selling the business to his son-in-law David Deveny and daughter Vicki. David has gone on to run the agency for nearly 40 years overseeing many changes in the industry and contributing his time and energy to the greater Riverside and Moreno Valley communities. Today his grandson, David's son Tod, is keeping Del Smith Insurance in the family.