Richard Andre Smith was born in San Pedro, CA, to Andrew Brandon and Mary Josephine (Way) Smith on September 12, 1929. He passed away peacefully at home with his loved ones on October 5, 2012. He was a Patriot, a Warrior, a Friend. He was 3rd generation Navy, was baptized on a battleship and served in the US Navy for 27 years. His enlistment covered the end of WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. He served on the USS Coral Sea, USS Constellation, USS Rendova, USS Essex, and in Fighter Squadron VF54. He rose to the rank of Senior Chief Aviation Ordnanceman. When thanked for his service, he always said that it had been a pleasure and the most fun a guy could have in a lifetime.
Among the many accommodations, medals, and ribbons he received he was most proud of his Distinguished Marksmanship Medal. He earned that shooting on the Navy’s Pistol Shooting Team. It was at one of these meets that he picked up the nickname “Pink” for wearing a pair of pink pants.
In retirement he moved to Oregon and found a very different life and new friends. He missed the Brotherhood of the Navy so he joined the Brotherhood of motorcycle riders. He rebuilt his 1978 Harley and enjoyed riding it and touring the US and Canada. He had many stories to tell,.
When he was 68 he became a super mini cup race car driver and owner. At age 70 he wom the Northwest Championship and retired from racing to go on to raising alpacas.
Some knew him as Richard, Smitty, Chief, Shamrock, or Pink, but all knew him as a loyal friend. He will be greatly missed. He is survived by his son Richard (Skip) Andre Smith II, stepsons Steven Tramill of Newton , Miss., Alan Tramill of Los Angeles, Ca., and Loryn (Tramill) English of Columbus, OH, and his long time companion Sharon Vail.