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Richard 'Smiley' Matteson July 23, 1927 - June 6, 2009

BIRD ISLAND -- Richard J. "Smiley" Matteson, 81, of Bird Island and formerly of Olivia, died Saturday at the Renville County Hospital in Olivia.

The service will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Bird Island. Military honors will be provided by the Olivia Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion. Burial will be in St. Aloysius Cemetery at Olivia.

Visitation will be from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. Thursday at Dirks-Blem Funeral Home in Bird Island.

He was born July 23, 1927, in Olivia to Harry S. and Rose (Brogman) Matteson. He attended St. Aloysius Grade School and graduated from Olivia High School in June of 1945.

In July of 1945, he enlisted and served in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Ingersoll patrolling the waters from Newport, R.I., to Cuba during World War II. He re-enlisted into the U.S. Army to serve in the Korean War. He was a member of the Olivia National Guard and retired with a rank of sergeant major.

In 1967 he opened Smiley's Supper Club in Olivia, which he owned and operated until his medical retirement in 1979. He later married Jeanette Mitchell in Bird Island and they resided in Bird Island.

In his youth he pitched for town teams in Olivia and Sacred Heart, was a member of a bowling league and the Olivia gun club. He directed the design and construction of the clubhouse of the Olivia Golf Club.

He is survived by his wife; son: Steve (and Ruth) Matteson of Ackley, Iowa; stepchildren: Athena (and Joe) Jungers of Bird Island, Michelle (and Dave) Denman of Darwin, Twyla Mitchell of Olivia, Jason (and Julie) of Olivia, Mary Nestande of New London, Cameron (and Susanna) Mitchell of Darwin, Tammy Olsen of Willmar, Stace (and Carolyn) Mitchell of Starbuck, Jon (and Diane) Mitchell of Bird Island; and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren; his brother: Jim (and Vi) Matteson of Glendale, Ariz.; sister: Margaret Stoulil of Albany; and his son's mother: Mary Matteson of Faribault.

He is preceded in death by his parents; stepmother: Liza Matteson; stepdaughter: Dawn Mitchell; and one sister.