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Dr. David S. Smith Jr.


1943 - 2018
Dr.  David S. Smith Jr. Obituary
Dr. David S. Smith Jr.

- - Dr. David S. Smith Jr., 74, after a battle with cancer, died on August 22, 2018. He was born on September 7, 1943 in Ashtabula, Ohio to the late David S. Smith Sr. and Winifred (Mills) Smith.

At the age of 3 after World War II, the family moved to Seattle-Tacoma, Washington. He graduated from Wilson High School in 1961. He attended Washington State University for a year and a half and transferred to the University of Washington in Seattle where he earned a B.A. in finance in 1965.

Upon graduating from college, Dave joined the Peace Corps. After training in Puerto Rico, he spent three years, 1966-69, in Colombia, South America as a volunteer. It was in Colombia that he met another Peace Corps volunteer, Dolores Trevino. They married in 1968.

When he returned from Colombia, Dave was employed by Sea Land Corporation, a containerized shipping company in Elizabeth, New Jersey. He supervised a new land bridge program in which goods between Europe and Asia were moved by rail, as a cost saving measure, across the U.S. instead of through the Panama Canal. He was selected as an award recipient for Outstanding Young Men of America in 1971 in recognition of the many community activities.

Medicine was a second career for Dave. He attended Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey while working full time to get all of his pre-medical credits. At the age of 31, with family in tow, he started medical school. He received his medical degree from the Autonomous University of Guadalajara, Mexico. Dr. Smith interned at Rutgers University Medical School through Fifth Pathway. He served his residency in Family Practice at Memorial Hospital in Carbondale, Illinois (SIU) where he was chief resident. In 1983, nearly 40, he began his practice with the Frederick C. Smith Clinic satellite in Delaware, Ohio.

Dr. Smith was devoted to family, church and community. He served as a member and an officer in the Delaware County Chapter Central Ohio Diabetes Association, Delaware County Easter Seal Society, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Co-chair of Delaware City School Bond Issue Campaigns, Habitat for Humanity, Co-chair of Delaware County Health Department Levy, the PIN Campaign for new building and the Delaware County Foundation Board. He was the recipient of the Rotary Club Paul Harris Award, and in 2003, he was the co-recipient with his wife, Dolores, of the Delaware Area Chamber of Commerce Wayne Hilborn Lifetime Achievement Award.

As a member of the First Presbyterian Church, Dave was ordained (1970) in Rahway, New Jersey. In Delaware, he served as an Elder, mentor and, leader. He was active in the Finance and Stewardship Committee. He particularly enjoyed medical mission trips throughout Ohio and Michigan and the relationships he had with the members of the church.

Dave was passionate about the gift of being a physician. He considered medicine a privilege; being allowed to be a part of peoples' lives and being of some help along their life's journey.

"Dr. Dave" fondly recalled standing on the sidelines, as a volunteer physician, getting to know the Delaware Hayes football players on Friday nights. He was a long-standing board member, president, vice-president and treasurer of the Delaware County Medical Association. Dr. Smith served on numerous committees and was on active staff at Grady Memorial Hospital until 2004 with courtesy privileges for years beyond. He was physician of the year for Grady Memorial Hospital in 1985. He founded the Insure Clinic, care for the medically indigent, in Delaware. He was board certified by the American Academy of Family Practice and eventually became a Fellow in 1996. Doctor Smith was one of the first doctors in the country to be certified by the American Board of Hospice and Palliative Care, a new specialty at the time. He served as medical director of Hospice at Grady Memorial Hospital for nearly 20 years. He was on the Board of Directors for the Frederick C. Smith Clinic in Marion for 15 years and served on the finance, internal policy, and equity committees.

In 1997, due to its growth, Smith Clinic opened a new spacious facility off of West Central Avenue in Delaware. There, Dr. Smith continued his practice until 2004 when he transferred to the Smith Clinic in Marion, to be the Director of the Occupational Health Center. In 2005, he was awarded Family Physician of the Year by the Ohio Academy of Family Physicians.

Dave retired in 2009 and continued his practice of medicine as a locum tenens in New Zealand. When he returned to the states, he volunteered as a physician providing medical care for the uninsured and served on the board of the Grace Clinic. He also enjoyed several medical mission trips to Haiti and Honduras.

He will be missed by his loving wife, Dolores, who became his rock and passionate supporter of 49 years. He was a very proud, involved, and caring father who offered unconditional love to his three children, Yvette (Bill) Ertle, David (Jill) Smith and Richard Smith.

A doting grandfather, Dave cherished visits and poker games with all of his grandchildren. He enjoyed attending the many sporting events and performing arts in which his grandchildren Julie and Brian Ertle, Lucas and Nolan Smith, Kate and Kelsey Smith participated.

In his free time, Dave enjoyed listening to jazz and dancing. He loved to play golf with friends and family, travel with his wife, relax on family vacations, and read.

He is survived by his sister Kathy (Jerry) Vedvick, his brother Bill (Alison) Smith, and nieces, nephews, cousins, and extended family.

At the end of the day, what mattered to Dave was the family he loved, the friendships he relished and having tried to make a difference in the lives he touched.

A memorial service will be held at Benes Room at Ohio Wesleyan University in Delaware, Ohio on Sunday, September 2, 2018 at 2pm. Immediately following the service, we will continue to celebrate Dave's life with family and friends until 5 pm. Food and refreshments will be served.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Habitat for Humanity, Delaware, Ohio (habitatdelawareunion.org) or the Hospice/Kobacker House, Ohio Health (ohiohealth.com/locations/hospice).
Published in the Marion Star on Aug. 28, 2018
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