Colonel Frederick A. "Buddy" Smith (1930 - 2019)

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Colonel Frederick "Buddy" A. Smith, 88, passed away on Jan. 2, 2019, at St. Mary's Hospital in Richmond, Va., after a long and valiant battle with an infection.
Buddy is survived by his wife of 54 years, Audrey Wood Smith; three sons, Brian, Freddie and William "Dan" Smith; two grandsons; five granddaughters; and one great-granddaughter.
Buddy was born in Huntington, W.Va., and raised in Richmond, Va. He attended John Marshall High School and received his Bachelor of Science degree from Virginia Commonwealth University, and a Master of Commerce degree from the University of Richmond. He pursued two careers simultaneously, serving 37 years in the Marine Corps and 30 years in the petroleum industry.
Buddy enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve while still attending high school, at age 17, in 1947. Following high school graduation, he self-funded his college education, while attaining the rank of Sergeant in the Marine Corps Reserve before being commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant. Buddy served on active duty from 1953 through 1955, at The Basic School, Quantico, Va., with Communications Company 3rd Marine Division in Japan, and during the Korean War with the 1st Marine Division as assistant Operations Officer, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines and Communications Officer, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines, later redeploying to Camp Pendleton, Calif. He rejoined the Marine Corps Reserve in 1955, in Richmond, Va., serving with 8th Battery. In 1974, he took command of the only Marine Reserve unit in Alaska, VTU 12-50, now Mobilization Training Unit Alaska-1. Buddy was promoted to Colonel in 1976. Under Colonel Smith's leadership, his unit produced the Arctic warfare doctrine endorsed by the Commandant of the Marine Corps and used as the basis for deployment, training and operations to this day. Colonel Smith's service awards included the Legion of Merit, Organized Marine Corps Reserve Medal, National Defense Medal, Korean Service Medal, Armed Service Medal, Marine Corps Reserve Service Ribbon, United Nations Service Medal and the Korean Presidential Citation.
During his years in Alaska, he was a member of many fraternal and professional organizations, including the Chamber of Commerce, Board Member of the Armed Services YMCA, Trustee for Anchorage Elks Lodge #1351, Boy Scouts of America, United Way Funding Programs, Alaska State Chairman of the Department of Defense Support for the Guard and Reserve Committee and Alaska State Commission to Procure a Memorial Statue to Alaska Veterans. Buddy joined Esso Standard Oil Company in 1955, holding several positions of increasing responsibility. He next moved to Mobil, becoming Financial/Treasury Manager in 1966. In 1973, the family moved to Alaska, where Buddy joined the Alyeska Pipeline Service Company, building the trans-Alaska pipeline. He participated in the planning, construction and operation of the pipeline, the largest privately financed construction project in history at that time. As a department manager, he was responsible for all security, communications, aviation, records management, business systems policies and procedures, and office facilities with related administrative services for the pipeline.
After his 30 years in the petroleum industry and 37 years of service to his nation in the Marine Corps, Buddy retired to devote his energies to his growing family. He also enjoyed fishing, golf, bowling, and, with family, visiting his condominium at Turtle Bay in Hawaii. In 1986, he returned to Richmond, but faithfully visited Alaska to enjoy fishing for many more years until his recent passing.
Family will receive friends on Friday, Jan. 18, 2019, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., at Bliley's Central, 3801 Augusta Avenue in Richmond, where a funeral ceremony will be held on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2019, at 2 p.m., with full military honors provided by the James M. Slay Detachment of the Marine Corps League, of which Buddy was a Charter Member. His remains will be interred at a later date in The Marine Corps National Cemetery, Quantico, Va.
Funeral Home
Bliley's Funeral Homes
3801 Augusta Ave
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 355-3800
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Published in Anchorage Daily News on Jan. 13, 2019
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