Our Heavenly Father called William Edward Smith Jr., 71, to eternal rest on Wednesday evening, May 6, 2020, after a lengthy battle with prostate cancer at his home located in Martinez, California. The son of William Edward Smith Sr. and Lily Mae Harmon Johnson, was born in Salisbury, Maryland on November 22, 1948. He was affectionately known as “Bill or Bill Black” to family and friends who grew up with him in Briddeltown in his hometown of Berlin, Maryland.
He attained hard-earned wisdom; he was the epitome of perseverance, hard work, and dedication. A hallmark of optimal human development, which later in life converted into Reverend William Edward Smith Jr. of Second Baptist Church located in Martinez, California. He was a decorated veteran of the United States Army Reserve, retiring at the rank of MSGT, after twenty-five years of service. After military retirement, Reverend Smith volunteered as a chaplain for the troops assigned to 3rd Battalion, 31st Regiment. Reverend Smith also retired from County Connections after twenty-six years of dedicated service, and for the past three years, worked for the Mount Diablo School District. He was an active member of the community. He held memberships with various community organizations, none more important to him than Lincoln Lodge No. 53, Berlin, MD, Prince Hall Affiliated. William Edward Smith Jr., a life well lived.
He is survived by his wife, Gloria Smith of Martinez, CA; five sons: Ronnie (Bonnie) Jacobs Sr. of Virginia Beach, VA, Shawn (Neki) Harris of Murrieta, CA, William Edward Smith III of Las Vegas, NV, Rafael Ayala (stepson) of Martinez, CA, Jaime Ayala (stepson) of Martinez, CA; Three daughters: Latrice (Matthew)Grimes of Rockville, MD, Kimberly Harris of Bowie, MD, Nalani Smith of Pleasant Hills, CA; Two brothers: Kevin (Stephanie) Purnell of Riviera Beach, FL, David Johnson of West Palm Beach, FL,; One sister: Angela (Johnny) Price of Riviera Beach, FL and five grandkids, two great grandkids.
Three sisters preceded in death: Gloria Harmon, Sandra Price and Mary Smith Smack.
Click here to view a webcast of the service on 5/14/2020 at 10:30 AM, Pacific Standard Time.
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