Robert P. Smith, 77

DADE CITY, FLA. — Robert P. Smith, 77, passed away peacefully at home in Dade City, Fla. on Friday, Aug. 7, 2015.

Robert (Bob) Partridge Smith was born on July 7, 1938 in Saugus, Mass. to parents Robert Gale Smith and Mabel Olive Searles.  Bob graduated from Bridgton High School in 1956.

Bob enlisted in the U.S. Navy in Portland in 1956 after high school graduation. During his four years of enlisted service, he monitored the Atlantic seas based at U.S. Naval Station Argentia, Canada. Bob continued to serve in the U.S. Navy as a reservist and was recalled to active duty with Patrol Squadron (VP) 741. During two deployments related to the Cuban Missile Crisis, VP 741 supplemented U.S. Naval patrols around Cuba and Hispaniola, looking for evidence of a possible Cuban invasion of Dominican Republic/Haiti.

Bob met his first wife of over 20 years, Carol Jean Martin, in Tampa, Fla.  Carol and Bob were married on Feb. 3, 1962. In December of 1962, Bob was assigned to Avionics at U.S. Naval Air Station, New Orleans, where Bob’s first two daughters, Mary Carol and Sarah Sue, were born in Belle Chase, La. Bob and Carol relocated to St. Petersburg, Fla., where the third and youngest daughter, Elizabeth Ann, was born.

Bob worked for Sprint Telephone for nearly 30 years (formally known as Florida Telephone Corporation and United Telephone Company) and was a proud member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). Bob enjoyed many fond memories with his colleagues, friends and family during his retirement celebration, officially retiring from Sprint Telephone on July 1, 1998.

In his retirement, Bob traveled extensively to many parts of Europe and Asia. Bob met his wife, Sirisopha (Pai) in Chang Mai, Thailand and married April 27, 2005. Bob and Pai traveled extensively throughout Thailand, Burma and Laos enjoying their time together learning about the rich culture and history. During half of the year, Bob enjoyed sharing Thai village life with Pai and his stepchildren, Saowanit (Opla) and Sahaphon (Pond) and their extended family in Kham Ta Kla, Sakonnnakhon Province, Thailand. During the other half of the year, days were spent enjoying country life in Dade City, Fla. and on Long Lake in Bridgton.

Bob was a member of the Museum Astronomical Resource Society (M.A.R.S) based in Tampa and shared time during many sky parties inspiring young minds to think beyond our solar system. He inspired his own children to keep track of the universe and keep the mind open to things yet undiscovered hence one of his grandchildren carries the name of Galileo. He was a lover of science and astronomical wonders and loved to explore the night sky! One of his greatest joys was spending time with his children and grandchildren.

Left to cherish his memory are his wife, Sirisopha Kaewpadcha (Pai); his three daughters Mary Ringer, Sarah Anker and Elizabeth Smith-Incer; his stepdaughter, Saowanit Gaewpadcha; his stepson, Sahaphon Gaewpadcha; his first wife, Carol Smith; his siblings, Ann Robbins, Tom Smith, Sue McCullough and Jim Smith; seven grandchildren; many nieces, nephews, cousins and other loving relatives and friends.

He was preceded in death by his father, Robert Gale Smith and mother, Mabel Olive Searles; grandparents Sanford Samuel Searles, Annie Helms Haywood, Bradford W. Smith and Susan E. Wells; and his beloved niece.

Please follow and like us: