Join us in welcoming WCC’s Smitty
Named in honor of United Sates Marine Corps Sergeant David James Smith
USMC Sergeant David Smith’s interest in serving in the military was evident since he was a young boy. After the events of September 11, 2001, Sgt Smith’s interest grew to be an ambition and soon thereafter, a reality. Sgt Smith graduated from Frederick High School in 2002 and enrolled at Salisbury University. After completing his first year at college, Sgt Smith decided to join the Marine Corps Reserves, because he was moved, his friends and family said, to make a difference and put the lives of others ahead of his own.
Sgt Smith’s first tour of duty was in Iraq in 2006-2007 with Company B, 4th Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, of Frederick, Maryland, deployed out of Camp Pendleton, California. This tour meant so much to him, his mother recalled, “…not only was his Battalion there to fight when needed, but they also provided much needed goods to the Iraqi people.”
After his tour, Sgt Smith enrolled at East Carolina University. He was studying to earn a degree in Distribution and Logistics and anticipated graduating in 2011. Though Sgt Smith’s six years were up prior to his next deployment, he chose to volunteer to deploy to Afghanistan in October of 2009. “David inspired others in his Battalion because of the depth of dedication he had to the Corps and all that it stood for. His training of those under him was not halfhearted,” said his family. “He truly cared about those he taught and their wellbeing, both physically and mentally. He would not let the men he trained go to Afghanistan without him. He did not have to go, but there was not moment when he entertained the notion of not being there with them. He expected the best performance from others around him, as he gave the best of himself. Men who served with him told us that David was truly a Marine’s Marine, someone that they aspired to emulate.”
On January 23, 2010, Sgt Smith was conducting a dismounted patrol in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, when he sustained wounds to his face and neck from a suicide bomber attack. He was medically evacuated to Lundstuhl Regional Medical Center, remaining on life support until his parent’s arrival. Tragically, Sgt Smith died of his wounds on January 26, 2010. He was 25 years old. In keeping with his wishes, Sgt Smith’s organs were donated. “They told us he saved five or six other people because of that,” his sister shared. “I think David would have liked that.”
Sgt Smith’s awards include the Combat Action Ribbon, the Selected Marine Corps Reserve Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon and the Armed Forces Reserve Medal.
“David was dedicated to the Corps and all that it stood for,” said his mother. “David was the type of person who gave all to his family and friends in friendship, support, and care. It was no different with the Corps. This was his life’s ambition and he had every intention of doing it very well.”
For his dedication, commitment, patriotism, service, and sacrifice for our country, it is with tremendous pride that we name WCC’s Smitty in honor of United Sates Marine Corps Sergeant David James Smith.