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In loving memory of
Gary Smith
  • August 31, 1941
  • -
  • May 13, 2020

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Obituary

Obituary
Gary Raymond Smith
August 31, 1941- May 13, 2020

Gary Raymond Smith, 78, of Lakeland, Florida, went to his eternal home on May 13, 2020 with his
beloved wife of 57 years, Shirley, by his side.

Gary served on both the USS Surfbird, a degaussing ship, and the USS Tullibee, submarine, during his US
Naval Service, 1960 to 1966. He retired as the unit administrator, Staff Sergeant, of Company C, 429 th
Forward Support Battalion, 29 th Infantry Division, during his service in the US Army National Guard, 1983
to 2001.

Gary loved to cook and owned several restaurants in Virginia. He retired to Lakeland, FL in 2002 where
he served his Lord Jesus Christ in fellowship with the brethren. He served others through Comfort
Keepers, Talbot House, Light House and the Cypress Lakes Veterans Association.
Gary and Shirley enjoyed the friendship of many. He was able to hear words of love and encouragement
from his children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews and friends up until the day of his homegoing for
which we were most thankful.

Gary is survived by his wife, Shirley; daughter, Terry Tussing (Mark Tussing) and son, Darren Smith of
Gordonsville, VA, and daughter, JoAnna Collins (Jonathan Collins) of Orange, VA; nine grandchildren and
four great grandchildren; brother, Samuel Smith (Geraldine Smith) of Emporium, PA; and many family
and friends. Gary was preceded in death by his parents, Arthur and Eulala Smith, sister, Joan Lyon and
great granddaughter Kinzley Collins.

A celebration of life memorial will be held in the upcoming months when our assembly will be less
restricted at Bethel Baptist Church in Socrum, Lakeland. Gary will be laid at rest in the Culpeper National
Cemetery in Virginia with full military honors in the near future.


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  1. 26 May 2020
    Dan & Lori Lyon lit a candle:
    Lit since May 26, 2020 at 5:02:38 PM

  2. 25 May 2020
    Frank and Donna Ryan lit a candle:
    Lit since May 25, 2020 at 5:21:43 PM

  3. 24 May 2020
    Sandra Busey says:
    Shirley and family: the love you all shared in your family was so lovely. I remember driving up to Connecticut at nineteen to visit you along with your aunt and mom and what a fun time that was. All through the years of visiting and eating at your restaurants and sharing stories and laughing were so much fun! You and Gary shared a great love through the years that is precious and rare. He will always be in your heart.

  4. 24 May 2020
    Sandra Busey says:
    Sandra Palmer Busey
    14711 Bentley Square
    Centreville, VA 20120

  5. 23 May 2020
    Katie lit a candle:
    Lit since May 23, 2020 at 5:47:14 AM

  6. 23 May 2020
    Katie lit a candle:
    Lit since May 23, 2020 at 5:46:20 AM

  7. 23 May 2020
    Jeannie says:
    A Successful Man
    By Bessie Anderson Stanley
    That man is a success –
    who has lived well, laughed often and loved much;
    who has gained the respect of intelligent men and the love of children;
    who has filled his niche and accomplished his task;
    who leaves the world better than he found it;
    who has never lacked appreciation of earth’s beauty or failed to express it.;
    who looked for the best in others and gave the best he had.
    ~Forever in my heart. Love you always Uncle Gary~

  8. 23 May 2020
    Jeannie says:
    That man is a success –
    who has lived well, laughed often and loved much;
    who has gained the respect of intelligent men and the love of children;
    who has filled his niche and accomplished his task;
    who leaves the world better than he found it;
    who has never lacked appreciation of earth’s beauty or failed to express it.;
    who looked for the best in others and gave the best he had.
    ~This describes by Uncle Gary perfectly. I will miss him very much ... till we meet again.

    Credit: Bessie Anderson Stanley

  9. 22 May 2020
    Samuel A Smith says:
    When tomorrow stars without me,please try to understand,that an angel came and called my name,and took me by the hand;The angel said my place was ready,in heaven far above,and that I would have to leavebehind all those I dearly love.But when I walked through those heavenly gates,I felt so much at home,for God looked down,smiled at me,and said Welcome home.So when tomorrow starts without me,don,t think we,re far apart,for every time you think of me,I,m right there in your heart.... Love you bro. Till we meet again

  10. 22 May 2020
    Marylin M. Riggan says:
    What a joy and influence of Christ like integrity Gary was to our community. He gave of his gifts of wisdom, hard work and presence. Prayers for all of you, as you celebrate his life and walk through this time of heartbreak. Love to all of you. Marylin Riggan

  11. 22 May 2020
    JoAnna Collins says:
    Love and miss you daddy. We will take care of mom until we are All reunited, until then I know you are in a paradise we cannot imagine And I thank Jesus for that. Love you more!
    -Always your Smittyball

  12. 22 May 2020
    JoAnna Collins posted an image:
    Mom and dad
    Mom and dad

  13. 22 May 2020
    JoAnna Collins posted an image:
    Army National Guard
    Army National Guard

  14. 22 May 2020
    Mark and Terry Tussing lit a candle:
    Lit since May 22, 2020 at 5:15:57 PM

  15. 22 May 2020
    JoAnna Collins posted an image:
    Navy
    Navy

  16. 22 May 2020
    JoAnna Collins posted an image:


  17. 22 May 2020
    JoAnna Collins lit a candle:
    Lit since May 22, 2020 at 5:13:28 PM

  18. 22 May 2020
    JoAnna Collins lit a candle:
    Lit since May 22, 2020 at 5:12:46 PM

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