07/28/05 — FRANKLIN A. SMITH

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Aug. 7, 1925-July 27, 2005

Aerospace pioneer Franklin Avery Smith, 79, died Wednesday, July 27, 2005, at Wayne Memorial Hospital.

A resident of Harborview Towers, an assisted living facility in Morehead City, he had Alzheimer's disease.

Born in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., Mr. Smith attended the prestigious Brooklyn Technical High School. Claiming to be older than he was, he joined the Untied States Navy shortly after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. His skills in engineering and electronics led him to become the chief electronics officer aboard the U.S.S. Walker, a Navy destroyer serving as a "submarine chaser" in the South and Western Pacific, from 1942 through 1945. Following World War II, he attended Syracuse University, where he earned a bachelor of science degree in engineering, graduating with honors in 1950. He joined Sperry Corporation as an engineer in Spokane, Wash. There he designed and tested advanced navigation devices for military aircraft, including the USAF Strategic Air Command B-47 and B-52 bombers. He later earned a master of science degree in electronic engineering from Rutgers University and worked as a design engineer for Bell Aerospace Corporation in Buffalo, N.Y., and Norden Corporation, a division of United Technologies Corporation in Stratford, Conn. During his long career, Mr. Smith became the inventor and patent holder of many aerospace innovations. One of the most colorful was a vertical take-off and landing platform to carry military personnel about the battlefield.

Mr. Smith is survived by his wife, Shirley Emmons Smith of Morehead City; one daughter, Leslie Kim Smith of Alexandria, Va., and Pine Knoll Shores; one son, Scott Smith of Cream Ridge, N.J.; and five grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Eastern Alzheimer's Association, 400 Oberlin Road, Suite 208, Raleigh, N.C., 27605.

A private service for the family will be held at a later date in Morehead City.

Arrangements are with Seymour Funeral Home and Cremation Service..

Published in Obituaries on July 28, 2005 1:52 PM