John’s obituary

John Pershing Smith, II (1973-2009)
Born: November 09, 1973
Died: July 21, 2009
Services will be held at: the Community Fire Company of Rising Sun, MD, 300 Biggs Highway, Rising, Sun, MD on Saturday July 25, 2009 at 11:00 a.m.
Visitation times are: at the fire company on Friday July 24 from 2-4 pm and 6-8 pm
John Pershing Smith, II, 35, of Rising Sun, MD, passed away July 21, 2009 at Union Hospital after a battle with melanoma. A lifetime resident of Rising Sun, he was born in Elkton, MD on November 9, 1973, the son of the late David Pershing and Ann McCardell Smith. He was 1991 graduate of Rising Sun High School. In 1990, he joined the Community Fire Company of Rising Sun and also worked as a dispatcher at the Rising Sun Police department. While with the Community Fire Company, he rose to the rank of Captain and was active in securing multiple grants for equipment and training. He was also on the committee for purchasing truck 861, rescue 871 and engine 815. John began his career with the Annapolis Fire Department in August of 2000, graduating first in his class, and achieved the rank of firefighter first class. While with the Annapolis Fire Department, he was assigned to the special operations team and was an instructor for Annapolis recruit class number 1. He enjoyed cycling and was a strong supporter of the Lance Armstrong Foundation. John was an avid Baltimore Ravens fan. His first love was being a dad and will be dearly missed by family and his many friends. He is survived by his wife Mary and his son Nathaniel, both at home as well as numerous aunts, uncles, and other family. A funeral service will be held at the Community Fire Company of Rising Sun, MD, 300 Biggs Highway, Rising, Sun, MD on Saturday July 25, 2009 at 11:00 a.m. Friends and family may call at the fire company on Friday July 24 from 2-4 pm and 6-8 pm. Burial will be in Brookview Cemetery. Charitable contributions in John’s memory may be made to Nathaniel Smith Scholarship fund c/o R.T. Foard Funeral Home, P.A., PO Box 248, 111 S. Queen St., Rising Sun, MD 21911.


I thought that this was important to add to the blog.  I’m told that the funeral home only keeps the obituaries online for 90 days, so I wanted to get it up here where it could be more permanent.

Coming up with John’s obituary was frustrating for me.  How do you summarize a lifetime into a few paragraphs?  And you can tell, I’m not the best summarizer 🙂 I think everybody in the room wanted to throw something at me… to me the obituary was one opportunity to tell the world about my husband… how special he was… how wonderful… one last hurrah…  To others an obituary is just a formality… name… date of birth… date of death… hometown… place of death… graduated from… survived by… preceded in death by…  worked for… the end.

I tried to make John’s obituary more special.  I don’t know if I succeeded.  But in the end, I was satisfied with it.  I’ve heard of teachers having their students write their own obituaries.  I’m sure it’s an interesting activity for those who take it seriously.  I sort of wish that John had written his own.  I know it would have turned out better 🙂

I think I did okay.

About Mary K. Smith

I was widowed in July 2009, when I lost my beloved husband, John, to melanoma. Cancer SUCKS. We have a young son who was just a year old when his father died. I live on a small farm in Maryland which is home to horses, cats, and a dog. I started this blog as a way for me to heal, a way to remember my husband, and eventually I'd like to share it with our son so he can see the love that his father had for him, the love that we had for each other, what a great person his father was, and how hard his father fought to live.
This entry was posted in Annapolis Fire Department, Community Fire Company of Rising Sun, Cycling, John, Nathaniel, Pre-stage IV, Stage IV and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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