Steve Smith, 1972

Spring 2021 (May 13, 2021)

Steve Smith

Steve Smith, age 71, of Algona, Iowa, died Feb. 27, 2021, at Mercy One Medical Center in Des Moines surrounded by his family after a brief illness.

Mass of the Christian Burial was celebrated March 3, at St. Cecelia Catholic Church in Algona. The celebrant was Father Edward Girres assisted by Deacon Bill Black. Music was provided by Ellen Gatton and Virginia Schulte. Lector was Steve’s niece Kate Schwenke. Eucharistic minister was Kyle Sheppard Smith. Casket bearers were members of the Kossuth County Sheriff’s Office and Iowa State Patrol. Burial was at Calvary Cemetery in Algona.

Funeral arrangements were under the guidance of Sharp Funeral Home in Carroll, with assistance of Oakcrest Funeral Services in Algona. Online condolences may be left at or

Steven Howard, son of Howard and Marian (Walsh) Smith, was born on Dec. 27, 1949, at Hampton, Iowa. He grew up on a farm outside of Alexander, and the family later moved into the Hampton community. While growing up Steve was active in the Boy Scouts earning his Eagle Scout award. He graduated from Hampton High School in 1968. While in high school Steve was active on the football team as well as very active in chorus. Steve enrolled at Luther College in Decorah and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in physical education with a minor in music in 1972.

Given the teaching market in the early 1970s, teaching positions in education were tough to come by. Steve took a firefighter and first responder job in Oelwein. While at a department meeting, the chief of police was at the meeting and approached Steve about being a patrolman. Little did Steve know this would begin a law-enforcement career lasting over 43 years. Steve worked his way up to sergeant of the Oelwein Police Department before taking a patrolman position with the Algona Police Department in 1975. It was here he met his future wife, Deb Sheppard, also employed with the Algona Police Department as a meter maid. After a brief stint as a patrolmen Steve accepted a commission as special agent for the Chicago & North Western Railroad Police, positioned in Omaha.

On June 3, 1978, Steve married Deb Sheppard at St. Cecelia Catholic Church in Algona. The couple made their home in Omaha for two years. After facing a transfer to Chicago, Steve and Deb decided it would be best to return to Algona. Steve was hired by Sheriff Chuck Day of the Kossuth County Sheriff’s Office in 1980. Steve and Chuck would become great friends, a lasting friendship until Chuck’s passing in 2009. Steve enjoyed a long career with the Kossuth County Sherriff’s Department raising to the rank of chief deputy. He retired in 2015. Some of his greatest enjoyments during his law-enforcement career were visiting with people, especially every year at the Kossuth County Fair, as well as associating with his colleagues from all over the Midwest at many LEIN and MOCIC Conferences.

Steve’s love for law enforcement limited his time for hobbies; however, he enjoyed traveling, especially taking cruises and numerous trips to Duluth, Minn. Although Steve didn’t enjoy sports, he did enjoy watching his children and grandchildren in their sports. He also enjoyed the Professional Bull Riders, attending various events, and watching the events on TV every weekend.

In addition to their active faith, Steve and Deb meticulously cared for the Calvary Cemetery grounds, often putting off family events to make sure the cemetery grounds were maintained to the best possible condition. Steve was a member of the 4th Degree Knights of Columbus and St. Cecelia Catholic Church.

Steve is survived by his wife: Deb Smith, of Algona; children: Anne (Mike) Magruder and son Noah of Fort Dodge; Grant (Theresa) Smith and their children Kaleb and Sophia of Algona; and Kyle Sheppard (Katie) Smith of Breda; Steve’s mother: Marian Smith of Sun City West, Ariz.; his siblings: Gary (B.J.) Smith of Surprise, Ariz., Sue (Paul) Stuempfig of Tucson, and Sandy (Dick) Ward of Cedar Rapids; his sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law: Diane (Bruce) Schwenke of Grand Junction, Colo., Donna (Kim) Passick of Canton, S.D., and Brenda (Brian) Groskreutz of Kearney, Neb.; as well as many nieces, nephews, other extended relatives, and close colleagues in law enforcement.

He was preceded in death by his father: Howard Smith; a brother: Larry Smith, born silent; his father- and mother-in-law: Duane “Bud” and Phyllis Sheppard; and his close companion, retired Police K-9 Officer, Jet.