Gary Raymond Smith

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 United States Naval Service, from 1960 to 1966. He retired as the unit administrator, Staff Sergeant, of Company C, 429​th ​Forward Support Battalion, 29th​ Infantry Division, after his service in the United States Army National Guard, 1983 to 2001.

Gary loved to cook and owned several restaurants in Virginia. He retired to Lakeland, Florida 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); son, Darren Smith, of Gordonsville; and daughter, JoAnna Collins (Jonathan), of Orange; 10 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren; brother, Samuel Smith (Geraldine) of Emporium, Pennsylvania; 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 for family and friends will be held in the upcoming months when our assembly is less restrictive in Gordonsville.

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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