Scott M. Smith

Scott Michael Smith, age 69, touched the face of his God on Sept. 16, 2022, following a hard- fought battle with cancer.

He was born in Ohio on May 12, 1953. The day after graduating from the Academy, he married the love of his life, Janet. He later earned a Master of Arts in French & Soviet history from the University of Washington.

During his 22-year commissioned career he flew a variety of first-line aircraft and was a history instructor at the Academy. He flew in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. After his Air
Force retirement, he flew for Delta Airlines, retiring in 2018.

Scott had a strong Christian faith and was an active church leader and member. He volunteered at many levels as a Boy Scout leader, earning the Silver Beaver service award. Scott was instrumental in the formation and operation of the Cadet Drum & Bugle (D&B) Corp, heading up the drum line until becoming the commander of the D&B Corps in his senior year. Recently, he helped organize and participated in the 50th anniversary celebration of the D&B Corps and was proud to take the field once again during a halftime show at Falcon Field.

Scott was also responsible for the CS-30, Class of ’75 tontine, which resides in Doolittle Hall, awaiting the last two surviving members of that group. He had so hoped to be able to share that bottle of Scotch with the “other” last survivor.

Scott’s beloved wife of 47 years, Janet, was with him at his passing, as she was throughout the entirety of his adult life. Rarely was there an Academy function at which you’d see Scott but not Janet. She was an extension of his life as a cadet and officer and supported Scott during every facet of his career.

Scott’s infectious smile and engaging personality never left him, even throughout his courageous struggles to overcome his cancer. He was a true friend and a Fighting Falcon to the end. God Bless You, Scotty.

Classmate and Best Friend, Rick Layman  |  Checkpoints Magazine, March 2023



Scott Michael Smith, age 69, passed away peacefully on September 16, 2022 following a courageous battle with cancer at his home in Dumfries, Virginia.

He was born May 12, 1953 to Norma (Wilson) and George Smith. He was a 1971 graduate of Springfield Local High School and a 1975 graduate of the United States Air Force Academy, where he met and married the love of his life, Janet. He also earned a Master of Arts in French & Soviet History from the University of Washington.

Scott served as an officer in the United States Air Force, retiring in 1996 after 25 years of service. During this period, he was a C130 pilot, an instructor at the Air Force Academy and as the Executive Officer to the Secretary of the Air Force Administrative Assistant. He flew missions during Operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield. He then worked for Delta Airlines as a pilot for 20 years, retiring in 2018.

Scott was proud of his Christian faith and was an active church leader and member. He volunteered for many years as a Boy Scout leader, earning the Silver Beaver service award. Scott participated in the Air Force Academy Drum & Bugle Corp as a cadet and had recently helped to organize and participate in their 50th anniversary celebration.

An avid traveler, Scott explored fifty-nine countries throughout his professional and personal life. He loved scuba diving with Janet and was a certified scuba instructor. He completed numerous woodworking projects in his shop. Scott brewed beer for many years and always had a home-brew on tap to share with family and friends, especially when cheering for his favorite team, the Pittsburgh Steelers.

He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Janet (Lopez) Smith; children, Jennifer McGuire (Bryan), Scott Michael Smith II; grandchildren, Ruth McGuire and Johndavid McGuire; mother, Norma Smith; brother, George (Skip) Smith; and sisters, Elizabeth Burleson (Polk), Tracy Balen (Alan) and Camille Gilbert (Adam).

Memorials may be directed to Trail Life:

Herald-Star, Steubenville, Ohio  |  October 11, 2022



From Stan Collins: It is with a heavy heart that I pass along the news that Scott’s final glide path has ended. I have no details to relate about his passing. I do know that he had a stage IV brain tumor removed several months ago and subsequently underwent the best treatments available. In recent days he had another surgery to drain fluid from his brain area, and very shortly after that he rapidly declined.

I feel my own mortality much keener now with this news.

Scott was a cherished former roommate, accomplished officer and aviator, a leader in all of his endeavors, generous with his time and talents, a well travelled citizen of the world, a loving husband, father, and grandfather, and a very good friend.

Rick Layman will be generating a GBNF write up.




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