On Thursday, May 16, 2013, John William Smith passed away in his home, in his bed, on his laptop. He lived his final moments doing what he enjoyed most. John was a beloved family man and master automotive technician. Respected in the Napa/ Sonoma County community for his superior knowledge in auto repair. John was born in Germany, then adopted and brought to the United States by his late parents, Elsie Laszlo and Warren Smith at the age of five. John served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the 1970s. John was married to Paula and had two daughters, Amy Berman and Penelope Thomsen. John later married Joanne and had three more daughters, Angel Allison, Karla and Joanna Smith. He leaves behind four granddaughters and two grandsons. John now rests in peace with one of his granddaughters. In 2009, John met the love of his life, Linda Grant-Smith. They were married in 2010. She was the female version of him and finally tamed the beast. He then gained two more daughters and one more grandson. They lived happily in the Napa Valley. John spent most of his weekends at the racetrack. He loved horses, riding his Harley Davidson, golfing, playing his guitar and spending time with his grandchildren. A Marlboro Red and a Dr. Pepper were almost always in his hands. He was commonly mistaken for Sam Elliott and his deep voice made all the women swoon. He was a badass. A memorial service will be held on May 25, 2013, 11:00 a.m. at Claffey & Rota Funeral Home, 1975 Main St. in Napa. Following the service, there will be a potluck reception. Information regarding the location will be available at the service. Condolences to the family may be left at ClaffeyandRota.com.
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Published Online in the Press Democrat from May 21 to May 25, 2013