Kerry Alton Smith
September 24, 1947 ~ April 9, 2023
Fort Worth, TX
Resided in: Arlington, TX
Kerry Smith, 75, passed away on Sunday, April 9, 2023 in Fort Worth, Texas, surrounded by his loving children. Kerry was born in 1947 in Fort Worth, Texas to Willie and Berta Bell Smith. He was the middle child surrounded by two sisters. The Smiths lived on the Eastside of Fort Worth in the town of Handley. In his youth, Kerry loved the outdoors and would be outside from sunup to sundown. He would frequently hike and explore the woods near their house. He was a very good student and had an interest in knowing how things worked, often taking things apart to study the parts before reassembling them. During his teen years he fought in the Golden Gloves competition as a boxer and rode bulls in the rodeo. He loved music and was a musician playing the drums and guitar in a band in the 1960’s.
Kerry graduated from High School in Fort Worth in 1965. After graduation he attended Arlington State College (UTA today). At school, he met the girl of his dreams, Jennifer Wells, and they would marry in 1966. He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War. He also used his GI Bill to become a pilot, which served him well later in life. He served a total of eight years in the U.S. Air Force and one year in the Air National Guard where he served as a Loadmaster on a Flight Crew. During his military career, he was stationed in San Angelo, TX, San Antonio, TX, and Anchorage, AK. After the military he had a career as an Alaskan Bush Pilot. Eventually, he and his family returned to Arlington, TX to be closer to family. He began a new career in paper hanging and was widely known for his attention to detail and strong work ethic. He later worked in construction and remodeling of homes and businesses for many years and some of those years with his son Nathan. He also worked as the Art Director for the movie “And They’re Off,” which was filmed on location in Lexington, Kentucky back in 1982. Later, Kerry would go on to work as a Postal Carrier for the USPS and eventually became a Building Equipment Mechanic and Electrician at the Jack Watson Post Office.
Kerry was always an extrovert, very social and outgoing, and never met a stranger. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, and anything outdoors, and loved being an Alaskan Bush pilot. He enjoyed the extreme sports of riding bulls and boxing and was good at both. Kerry loved to go out to eat with family and friends, but nothing compared to his wife’s legendary cooking. And, he dearly loved his family.
He was preceded in death by his parents and wife of 51 years, Jennifer Smith, the love of his life. He is survived by his daughter Rachel Evans and son-in-law, Dennis Evans, son Nathan Smith, and sisters, Joyce Wilhoit and Lynette Smith.
Funeral: 11 a.m. Wednesday, April 26, at Wade Family Funeral Home, 4140 W. Pioneer Parkway, Arlington. Graveside Service: 1 p.m. at Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery, Dallas