Captain James “Smitty” William Smith

Captain James “Smitty” William Smith (21) USNR (Ret.)  died of natural causes at Hilton Head Island, S.C., on March 28, 2017. He was 83 years old.A native of Washington, D.C., attended St. John’s College HS and Bullis Preparatory prior to receiving his appointment to the Naval Academy. He played Varsity baseball and graduated in 1956 as a member of the 21st Company.


Upon graduation, Jim married Charlotte Calvert Wilton and reported to USS Bayfield (APA-33)San Diego. He attended submarine school at New London and then reported to USS Cubera (SS-347), receiving his promotion to Lieutenant (jg). Qualifying for submarines December 1958 and was promoted to Lieutenant in June 1960.


Jim was ordered to USS Redfin (SS- 272) August 1960 and to FBM Navigation School in August 1961. Upon graduation, he reported to USS John Marshall (SSBN 611) as Navigator. He completed construction, shakedown and DASO of the John Marshall, then deployed on the submarine’s maiden patrol December 1962. In September 1963, Jim resigned from active duty and accepted a reserve commission.


Jim and Charlotte settled in Potomac, Maryland where he began employment with Vitro Laboratories as a Systems Engineer. In 1966 he accepted the role of Director, Government Programs Development for Nuclear Utilities Company. In 1971 he moved to Bradford National Corporation as Manager of Defense Programs. In 1979 Jim retired from the Naval Reserve with the rank of Captain.

Bradford Systems was sold to McDonald Douglas and Jim became the Director Defense Systems. After 11 years Jim accepted an offer of Senior Vice President at Applied Management Sciences (AMS) and named to the Board of Directors in 1984.  AMS was sold to Aspen Systems where Jim worked until retiring in March of 1996.


Jim’s passion was baseball, he dedicated himself to coaching the young men of Montgomery County for over 25years, becoming President for both the Wheaton Boys’ Club and Montgomery County Baseball Association.  In 1995 he was awarded the MCBA lifetime achievement award for his service.

Jim and Charlotte retired to Hilton Head Island where he reconnected with classmates and served on the Board of the HHI Navy League.  He was a 2 term president, as well as Regional representative to the National Navy League.


Jim is survived by his children Charlotte, Mary, Jim and Tom; 10 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren. Memorial Mass will be held on July 5th at the Naval Academy Chapel at 10:00 and military honors will be provided.