From a contemporary press report:
Gary Robert Smith, 53, an Army Special Forces medic who suffered disabling wounds including loss of almost all his vision during the Vietnam War, died August 29, 2002, at his home in Beltsville, Maryland. He had diabetes.
Smith, who had lived in the Washington area for the last 15 years, was born in Syracuse, New York. He was a Native American and a member of the Wolf Clan of the Oneida Nation.
He served with the 101st Airborne Division in Vietnam but had been unable to work since leaving military service. His decorations included a Bronze Star, Purple Heart and Combat Medical Badge.
Before relocating to this area, he lived in Brazil, where he was made a chief by an Indian tribe in the Amazon River basin.
He was a member of the Sacred Fire Warriors Society, American Indian Society, United Religions Initiatives, Prayer Vigil for the Earth and Vietnam Veterans of America. He also participated in an inaugural honor guard for President Ronald Reagan.
His marriage to Mary Smith ended in divorce.
Survivors include their daughter, Rebecca S. Smith of Austin; his companion, Gail A. Martin of Sarasota, Florida; his parents, Margaret and Sherwood Smith of Syracuse; two sisters, Lee Smith of Falls Church and Laurie Smith of Syracuse.
SMITH, GARY ROBERT
Dawana made his journey to the Spirit World on Thursday, August 29, 2002. He was Wolf Clan of the Oneida Nation. Gary was a decorated veteran of Vietnam, where he was a Special Forces medic. He was awarded the National Defense Service Medal, Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, Combat Medical Badge, Gallantry Cross Bronze Star and many others. While in Brazil, Gary was honored to have been made a chief by a delegation of Amazon Indians. His daughter, Rebecca S. Smith; his parents, Margaret and Sherwood Smith; sisters, Lee Smith and Laurie Smith; and a longtime companion, Gail A. Martin survives Gary.
The funeral service will be held September 25, 2002, 10 a.m. at Arlington National Cemetery. Contact Rabiah 703-352-5188.
SMITH, GARY ROBERT
SSG US ARMY
- DATE OF BIRTH: 01/10/1949
- DATE OF DEATH: 08/29/2002
- BURIED AT: SECTION 54 SITE 3666
ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY
Michael Robert Patterson was born in Arlington and is the son of a former officer of the US Army. So it was no wonder that sooner or later his interests drew him to American history and especially to American military history. Many of his articles can be found on renowned portals like the New York Times, Washingtonpost or Wikipedia.
Reviewed by: Michael Howard