L. Hoyt Griffith of West Plains, MO, age 91 years, went to be with our Lord Jesus Christ on August 21, 2021. He was born on December 25, 1929 in Chattanooga, TN, and was married for 69 years to Ruth Griffith (“his Ruthie”). They met while both were serving in the Air Force during the Korean War. He was preceded in death by his parents, Hoyt and Nellie Griffith, his sister, Marie McDowell, and his sister Betty Ball and her husband, Ray, all of Tennessee.
He served in the Navy Reserve for two years from 1948-50, and in the Air Force for four years from 1950-54. His rank was S/SGT when he completed his service. He served as Radio Traffic Analyst with the National Security Agency (NSA) and was stationed at the South Post of Fort Myers and later attached to Bolling Air Force Base. His job was highly classified and he was awarded the National Defense Service Medal and the Good Conduct Medal. After leaving the military, he led an exemplary civilian life. He received an Engineering Degree from the University of Tennessee and later having worked for GE and IBM, he became a Senior VP in Electronic Banking Division of IBC, a Bank Holding Company (now part of Wells Fargo). After retirement, he received a 10-year U.S. Government Service Pin for working with the U.S. Census.
Survivors include three daughters, Della Marie Griffith and Dixie Pohlman of Richmond, VA, Diane Smithey and son-in-law, Louis, of West Plains, MO, and son, Mark Griffith, of Avon Park, Florida.
Surviving grandchildren include Tanner Griffith (Kara) of Raleigh, Drs. Ashley DiMeola (Michael) of Vermont, Daniel Griffith (Meredith) of State College, PA, Michael Griffith of St. Petersburg FL, Elizabeth Griffith of St. Petersburg FL, Samuel Smithey (Sharon) of Kansas City, MO, and Jack Smithey (Emily) of Kansas City, MO.
Other survivors include sister Pam Harne (Donald) of Smithsburg, MD, and a number of beloved nieces, nephews, great-grandchildren, great-nieces, and great-nephews.
He wanted it to be known by all, just in case they didn’t know it before, that he knew and loved the Lord Jesus Christ and wanted all of his friends and acquaintances to also know and love the Lord. He was an active member of Franklin Heights Church in Rocky Mount VA for many years. When he moved to Missouri in 2018, “Griff” found a good church and enjoyed attending First Baptist Church of West Plains.
A memorial service will be held at Missouri State Veterans Cemetery in Springfield, MO on Thursday, August 26, 2021 at 1:00 PM. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Gideons International and may be left at or mailed to Robertson-Drago Funeral Home, 211 West Main, West Plains, MO 65775.