U.S. Army Obituary (1928-2021) – Blythewood, SC

CWO Clarence R. Smith, U.S. Army (retired)
June 24, 1928 – August 31, 2021
Blythewood, South Carolina – CWO Clarence Ray Smith, US Army (Ret.), 93, of Blythewood, died Tuesday, August 31, 2021. Born June 24, 1928 in Oxford, Mississippi, he was the son of the late Escar Sevantus and Rosalie Reeder-Smith.
CWO Smith joined the US Army on September 1, 1948. After the Second World War he served in the occupation forces in Europe, a business trip in the Korean War and two missions in the Vietnam War. He retired after 26 years on January 9, 1974, and attained the rank of CW-2. After his military career, he worked in the civil service for 18 years, teaching pastry baking to chefs for the US Army. CWO Smith retired with over 44 years of federal service.
His lifelong hobby of hard work led to other endeavors including a landscape maintenance company and overseeing internment and maintenance duties in several cemeteries. His sons reluctantly took part in the landscape project and didn’t realize until later in life that those cartoon-destroying wake-up calls at 6am on Saturday morning, their father told them, were “character builders”. He also owned Smith Farms, a horse boarding and training facility in the family home in Blythewood that is still in operation today. If he had a second hobby, it was working with and looking for his beloved “farming family”.
A lifelong Primitive Baptist, he has been an active member of the New Hope Primitive Baptist Church of Columbia since 1959. Generous as he was, he took responsibility for the Church itself, including the maintenance of the buildings and grounds. When he couldn’t do it himself, he hired someone to take care of it. His personality, commitment to his family and his generous manner made him widely respected and admired in the Blythewood community, which honored him with a special proclamation in 2019.
His life was hard work, family, and service to others. He often said that he’d rather wear out than rust, and that he made it.
Survivors include his sons Donald Ray Smith and his wife Shirley of Rancho Cordova, CA; Steven Escar Smith and wife Natalie of Knoxville, TN; and Michael Robin Smith of Blythewood; four grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren. In addition to his parents, he was preceded by his wife Laura Bell Derden Smith and ten siblings in death.
The memorial service will take place on Thursday, September 9th at 12.30pm at Shives Funeral Home, Trenholm Road Chapel, 7600 Trenholm Road Extension, Columbia, SC. Burial with full military honors will take place at 2:00 p.m. at Fort Jackson National Cemetery, 4170 Percival Road, Columbia, SC. The family will receive friends at the funeral home on Wednesday evening from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Instead of flowers, commemorative donations can also be sent to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.
Memories and condolences can be shared among ShivesFuneralHome.com.

Published by The State on September 5, 2021.

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