|Robert (Bob, “Smitty”) W. Smith, 82, of Wethersfield, loving husband of nearly 56 years and forever best friend to Elizabeth “Betty” (Keen) Smith passed away peacefully at home due to complications from Congestive Heart Failure on Monday (November 14, 2011) with his loving family by his side. Bob was born in Hartford on June 26, 1929 to the late William and Helen (Stoacklin) Smith. Bob married Elizabeth on December 31, 1955 and was the proud and dedicated father of nine children. In addition to his wife, Elizabeth, Bob leaves son Robert Smith of Rocky Hill, daughter Kathleen Lilley and husband Ray of Wallingford, son Michael Smith of Chatham, MA, daughter Ellen Foley and husband Rob of Coventry, daughter Sheila Elliot and husband Doug of Rocky Hill, son Danny Smith and wife Cathi of Wethersfield, daughter Maura Cantwell and husband Glenn of Glastonbury, daughter Maggie Seaver and husband Vin of Rocky Hill and daughter Eileen Bjarno and husband Arne of Glastonbury. Bob was equally proud of his 19 grandchildren whom all fondly called him “Pop”; William and Mallory Smith, Raymond Lilley, Hannah Smith, Christine (fiancé Matt Smith), Shannon (husband Jay Seeley) and Robbie Foley, Douglas and Jaclyn Elliot, Julia and Brendan Smith, Paige and Patrick Cantwell, Katie and Tommy Seaver and Emily, Morgan, Madelyn and Claire Bjarno. Bob also leaves his sister Beverly and brother-in-law Glenn Billiter, brother-in-law Pete Kinsella and wife Linda, daughter-in-laws Elizabeth Smith and Annalisa Smith, many loving nieces and nephews and dear friends. He was predeceased by his sister-in-law Patricia K. Kinsella. “Smitty” grew up in Hartford and was a proud member of the Bulkeley High School Class of 1947, serving on his class’ reunion committee over the years. He attended Trinity College before enlisting in the U.S. Navy serving four years on the USS Token during the Korean War. Bob began his career with Armour and Co. then joined the Union Meat Company in 1957 where he stayed until his retirement in 1989; working as a buyer and Vice President of Sales where the life long relationships he established with employees, vendors, restaurants and store owners always remained important to him. Bob and Betty raised their family in Hartford where his interest in service to community began before moving to Wethersfield in 1968. Bob was a 43 year resident of Wethersfield where he loved raising his family and continued his commitment to serving the community. He was a former Wethersfield Town Council member, Vice-Chairman of the Democratic Town Committee, Vice-Chairman of the Democratic Screening Committee, Chairman of the Recreation & Parks Board and recipient of the Democratic Town Committee Distinguished Service Award in 1985. Bob was a communicant of The Church of the Incarnation in Wethersfield and a CYO coach. He was a member of the Incarnation Men’s Club, Knights of Columbus and the Irish American Home Society. Bob was a long time member of Wethersfield Country Club and upon his retirement was able to finally enjoy more time on the course with his Legends friends. Rounds of golf with his children and grandchildren and a memorable round on the Old Course at St. Andrews were treasured by Bob. Bob especially enjoyed time spent in Chatham on the Cape where countless treasured family memories were made. He cherished time spent with his “honey”, their children and grandchildren; watching them participate in their activities always brought a smile to his face. Bob loved music and singing, and especially enjoyed everything Irish and patriotic. He was an extremely caring and dedicated husband and father who taught all his children and grandchildren the importance of taking care of the ones you love. Bob made faith and family a priority and taught many life lessons to those around him through his actions. His mantra to all of us was to always “keep your nose to the grindstone”. Bob’s wisdom, kind heart, gentle nature and dependability will be greatly missed and fondly remembered. Bob’s spirit will live on in all of us as we strive to live life by the wonderful examples he taught us. The family would like to express special thanks to Dr. Gregory Walsh and Consulting Cardiologists, PC for their years of care and guidance.
The Smith family will receive relatives and friends Thursday, November 17 from 4-8pm at the Farley-Sullivan Funeral Home, 34 Beaver Rd. Wethersfield. A Mass of Christian Burial celebrating Bob’s life will be held Friday, November 18 at 11am in the Church of the Incarnation, with Rev. Fr. James Moran officiating (Attendees are asked to go directly to the church). Interment will follow in the family plot in Cedar Hill Cemetery (Section 27), 453 Fairfield Ave., Hartford. To extend online condolences or for further information, please visit farleysullivan.com.
For Bob it was “all about the kids”, therefore donations in Bob’s memory may be made to Hartford County 4-H Camp in Marlborough, Attn: Elsie P. Woolam, 1225 Main Street, South Windsor, CT 06074
May the road rise up to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
And the rain fall soft upon your fields . . .
And until we meet again, May God hold you in the palm of His hand. Amen.