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Ralph L. SMITH


1932 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
SMITH, Ralph L. Reverend Ralph Lynwood Smith passed away on December 10, 2016. He was born in Birmingham, AL on August 12, 1932. After graduating from Emory University, he spent time during the Korean War with the U.S. Army Security Agency. He was later called to the ministry, graduating from the Candler School of Theology at Emory, then being ordained in 1962 by the Christian Church, Disciples of Christ. He served as Assistant Minister of First Christian Church of Atlanta, and Senior Minister at First Christian Church in Albany, GA. He became Senior Minister at First Christian Church of Decatur, GA in 1972, and served there until 1986, when he became the Regional Minister and President of the Christian Church in Kansas. He served as President of the board of the Atlanta Association of Pastoral Counselors, on the Board of the Christian College of Georgia, Moderator of the Christian Church in Georgia and President of the Ministers of the Greater Atlanta Union of the Christian Church. Ralph also served on the General Advisory Committee of the Department of Special Education for the DeKalb County School System. He was Director of the Atlanta Association for International Education, and served on the Board of Directors for Planned Parenthood, Campbell Stone Apartments, Decatur Cooperative Ministry and the Christian Council of Metropolitan Atlanta. Additionally he served on the General Board of the Christian Church, the General Nominating and Administrative Committees of the General Board, the Commission on Finance of the Christian Church, the Board of the Christian Church Foundation, the Executive Committee of the Regional Ministers and Moderators Conference, the College of Regional Ministers and as trustee for Phillips University. Reverend Smith was preceded in death by his parents, Horace Lynwood Smith of Athens, GA and Mildred Harper Holt Smith of College Park, GA and his sister, Betty Jean Smith Jobson. He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Emily Ownby Smith; son, Dr. Kevin Lynwood Smith (Carmen); daughter, Karen Smith Hunter (Bill); and grandchildren, Ben Smith and Renee Smith. In lieu of flowers, contributions are requested to go to First Christian Church of Decatur, 601 W. Ponce de Leon Ave., Decatur, GA 30030, or the Christian Church Foundation, PO Box 1986, Indianapolis, IN 46206-1986. Services will be held on Sunday, December 18, 2016 at 3:00 PM at First Christian Church of Decatur, 601 W. Ponce de Leon Ave., Decatur, GA 30030. A.S. Turner and Sons Funeral Home and Crematory.
Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Dec. 13, 2016
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