Tuesday, June 28, 2022
5:00 PM to 7:00 PM EDT
Heritage Life Story Funeral Homes
Alt & Shawmut Hills Chapel
2120 Lake Michigan Dr., N.W.
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Followed by a time of sharing
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
To help family with funeral expenses
2120 Lake Michigan Dr. NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Jasen Smith was a selfless person who lived his life spending time with family and making each day count. An avid cook, he shared his love of food with many and always put a special twist on a recipe to make it his own. Known for his optimism and gentle ways, Jasen leaves behind a wonderful collection of memories to be cherished by his loving family and many special friends.
The 1970s were characterized by many marginalized people still fighting for equality, the increase of political conservatism, and traditional family roles. By 1977, the Apple II computer made its debut, Star Wars opened in cinemas, and Elvis Presley died at the age of 42. During the era of Jimmy Carter, Chris and Cindy (Hansen) Smith welcomed the arrival of their newborn baby boy, Jasen Brian, on October 31st in the beautiful Pacific coastal city of Bremerton, Washington. Jasen, although with his siblings, Ryan and Brandon, were born during his father’s years in the Navy. His mother was a homemaker and moved the family back to Grand Rapids when their father was deployed to the Persian Gulf in the early 90s. Once discharged, Chris joined his family back in the states and took a job at Meijer while Cindy went to work at Kmart.
Growing up on Widdicomb NW and later Northrup NW in Grand Rapids, Jasen lived a typical childhood of the times. He attended school at Stocking Elementary and later Riverside Middle School. For the majority of his childhood, he traveled with his grandparents. Jasen also enjoyed fishing with his parents. On one occasion, his mom explained to him that the worms were to feed the fish. So Jasen decided to open the container and toss them all into the river! He later played football and ROTC for Union High and graduated with the Class of 1996.
The year 1997 would change his life forever when he met his future bride, Angela Schultz! She was attending a girlfriend’s birthday party at the roller-skating rink on Plainfield Ave NE. Her friend was supposed to skate with Jasen, but she went with someone else. So she and Jasen skated together and really hit it off! Angela was smitten from the start and had a secret plan when she decided to keep his hat in order to ensure they would see one another again. The very next day the two of them met at McDonald's and officially began dating on November 2nd, just two days after his twentieth birthday! They dated steadily and welcomed their son, Jasen Jr. in 1998. By the time they were ready for their second child, Dakota, they were married on August 3, 2002. Later, they welcomed two more children, Hunter in 2006 and Emma in 2017. Jasen and Angela loved their role as parents and worked hard to provide for their family. He worked as an assistant manager for a local pizza place in town. Any chance they got, they packed up the family and traveled to a wide variety of destinations. Some of their favorite trips included Texas, Tennessee, Georgia, and Chicago. Jasen loved to pack a cooler and spend time outdoors either fishing or soaking up the sun with his kids.
Outside of work and family, Jasen found his happiness in preparing and eating food. He spent many hours perfecting his recipes by watching cooking shows on the History channel. His favorite dish was grilled corn on the cob with shrimp or steak kabobs. Never one to take any chances, he only trusted his food to be grilled with charcoal. He and Angela liked getting out on date nights to try new spots in town. Jasen was always on the hunt for his favorite meal of leg of lamb with a side of potatoes. If they went to a buffet, it was hard to get him to leave! He literally could stay for hours pausing between return trips to fill his plate. The only way his guests knew if he was close to being done was when he went to a Chinese restaurant, he liked to finish his meal with a bowl of hot and sour soup!
Sadly, Jasen had been diabetic for many years. In 2020, he was diagnosed with kidney disease. Although the illness had limited his activity, in the last couple of weeks he had been working on building his strength and was able to get out more. Jasen celebrated a wonderful Father’s Day with his family. The next morning, he was found unresponsive and rushed to the emergency room. He was put on life support until all the kids could come to see him and say their goodbyes. Described as a romantic gentleman with a wonderful sense of humor, Jasen leaves behind a rich collection of sharing many special memories with the family he so loved. May they be comforted in knowing that he loved each and every one of them beyond measure. Gone too soon, he will be greatly missed. May his family find joy and happiness in sharing his warm memories for generations to come.
SMITH – Jasen B. Smith age 44, of Grand Rapids, passed away on June 25, 2022. He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Kenneth (Zena) Smith and Richard Hansen; and Cousin Matthew. Jasen is survived by his wife, Angela Smith; children, Jasen (Kera) Smith Jr., Dakota Smith, Hunter Smith and Emma Smith; and grandchildren, Ellie and Markus. Also surviving are his parents, Chris (Cindy) Smith; in-laws, Roger Schultz and Sherrie Watkins; siblings, Ryan (Tiani) Smith and Brandon (Autumn) Smith; sisters-in-law, Sarah (Rick) Nelmark and Melisa (Marcease) Howard; brother-in-law, Joshua (Hunter) Rocha; Grandmother Alice Hansen and many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins. Friends and family will gather for visitation from 5-7, followed by a time of sharing, on Tuesday June 28 at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home – Alt and Shawmut Hills Chapel, 2120 Lake Michigan Dr. NW. Contribution in his memory may be made to help cover funeral expenses (checks can be made directly to funeral home)