Kenneth E. Smith, 76, a devout Christian, passed away at his home in Martindale, Texas, on Feb. 1, 2015.He was born in Winter Haven, Fla., on May 10, 1938, his family moved to Kingsville, Texas in 1955.
Ken entered the Navy in 1959 and served for six years. While in the Navy, Ken served on the commissioning crew of the world’s first nuclear powered aircraft carrier, the US
S Enterprise, becoming a Plank Owner. He later served as a nuclear weapons technician on the aircraft carrier USS Saratoga.
After his discharge in 1963, Ken moved to San Antonio and worked in the aircraft industry as an electronics technician.
In 1978, Ken moved to Edinburg and married the love of his life, Carolyn. Together they owned and operated Aviation Electronics, an aircraft radio shop at the McAllen airport. They sold their business and in 2006, retired and relocated to the San Marcos area.
His parents, Shorty Sherbert Smith and Lois Ruth Martin, stepmother, Anna Allen Smith and his brother, Charles Robert “Bob” Smith, preceded Ken in death.
Ken is survived by his beloved wife of 36 years, Carolyn Clark Smit; his sisters, Rose Mary Smith Tripp and Patricia Ann Jackson Ladd; his step-children Keith Clark (Debbie), Carla Clark Alvarado (Jaime) and Gary Clark Jr. (Kathy); one nephew, Chris Tripp (Lora); and two nieces, Debra Smith Frazier and Jennifer Smith; eight step-grandchildren and five step-great-grandchildren.
Ken was a pilot who held commercial and multi-engine ratings and was an active member of the Quiet Birdmen. He was an avid seeker of knowledge, who enjoyed problem solving, and was always helping others repair their equipment. He once provided a private pilot who had cancer of the throat with the ability to talk to the tower through his tracheostomy so he could continue his love of flying. He was known as a smart, hard-working, down-to-earth and honest man. He was always ready to help his family members to move or with other problems. He loved his only nephew, Chris very much and Chris would visit from the Marine Corps Academy as often as he could.
The family would like to thank the angels at CTMC Hospice for their gentle loving care of not only Ken, but also the entire family. The nurse Ann and the aide Margarita were marvelous as well as the chaplain and grief counselor.
A service of Grateful Memory will be held for Ken on Friday, Feb. 6, at 10 a.m. at the First Christian Church in Lockhart, Texas. The church is located at 202 W. San Antonio Street. In lieu of Flowers donations to a favorite charity may be made.