Brian James Smith

Oct 10, 1944 - Dec 07, 2020

Brian James Smith

October 10, 1944 - December 07, 2020


Brian Smith, age 76, of Portsmouth, Rhode Island, passed away peacefully in his sleep on December 7, 2020. Brian was born in Worcester, MA to Bernard and Vivian Smith, and grew up in Shrewsbury. Brian married Leslie (Goguen) Smith of New Bedford, MA on August 29, 1969 in Long Beach, CA. They celebrated their 50th anniversary last summer with friends and family.

Brian served in the US Navy during the Vietnam war on the USS Brooke. After his service, he completed an Electrical Engineering degree at South Eastern Massachusetts University (UMass, Dartmouth), and returned to working for the Navy, as a contractor "downtown" (near DC). In 1977, he moved back to New England for good, for a job as an engineer at TRICCSMA (later merged into the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Newport), settling into the home where he and Leslie raised their family. He had a 30 year career working on US Navy submarine combat systems, early on as a test engineer and later in management, retiring in 2009.

Outside of work, Brian volunteered in his community, as a coach in Little League (before having kids of his own), Cubmaster of Pack 1 and later Scoutmaster of Troop 1 Portsmouth, president of the Portsmouth Music Boosters, member of the town zoning board, and as a poll worker. Until recently, in the winter he could often be found using his trusty snow blower to clear out the neighbors' driveways.

Brian always did what he believed was the right thing to do, and raised his sons to do the same.

Brian is survived by his wife, Leslie, his children, Colin Smith and his wife, Mary, and Matthew Smith. He will also be missed by his grandchildren, Susan and Leo Smith, his sister, Joyce Deprospo and his sister-in-law, Patricia Spaeth.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Bernard and Vivian Smith.

Due to current restrictions, services for Mr. Smith will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his name to your local food bank.


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