MISSOULA — Local businessman Barrie Smith passed away at home from lung cancer on Aug. 3, 2018.
He was born on Sept. 30, 1936, in Regina, Saskatchewan, to Ralph and Violet Smith. He spent his early years in Victoria, British Columbia. The family moved back to the states and settled in Spokane, Washington.
Barrie compared living in Spokane to the movie American Graffiti. He began his lifelong love of Corvettes in high school and he owned Corvettes for the rest of his life. He enjoyed street racing until the end.
He was an avid Ham Radio operator. He started transmitting when he was in junior high and W7ALW was his call sign. He built much of his gear and used technology to the fullest. Other hobbies were photography and gardening. Colorful flowers were the subject of many of his photographs.
He took his love of technology and creative spirit and combined them for his lifelong career in photo processing. He moved to Missoula with his first wife Patti in 1967 and purchased his first business. He named it Color Processors Inc. His son Evan was born in 1968. Barrie single-handedly built the business to the point CPI was processing film for five states with a fleet of delivery trucks and running 24 hours a day processing thousands of rolls of film a day. He even met his wife Rhonda while she was working for him. In 1986 they opened Yellowstone Photo. For over 40 years they worked together, played together and loved each other.
He said he would never retire but due to health issues and digital photography he retired in 2013 at the age of 76.
In lieu of a formal service, have a gin and tonic, gun your motor at the stop light and live life your way.
As an expression of sympathy, memorial contributions may be made in Barrie’s name to Camp Mak-a-Dream.
Survivors include his wife Rhonda, step-son Dan, son Evan and brother Brian.