On Friday, April 9, 2021 — Days after joyously celebrating his 79th birthday, William C. Smyth Jr. of Tiverton, passed away at home surrounded by his loving family.
William was born in Newport, RI to William and Gertrude (Scoville) Smyth. Graduating from Rogers High School in 1961, and known as “Billy” or “Bill” to his many friends and family members, he was known for his extraordinary work ethic and commitment to his family.
From a young age, Billy was eager to work and by the age of ten, he was delivering milk for Round House Dairy. Quite often, he could also be found assisting with Sunbeam Bread deliveries. During his younger adult years, Bill lived and worked in Florida and Colorado. However, he always found his way back to RI. Locally, he worked for Sears, Roebuck, and Co. in Middletown, and then became a highly-regarded plumber on Aquidneck Island. In 1978, Bill met the love of his life, Deon Andrews, at the Franklin Spa on Spring Street in Newport. Not long afterwards, they wed on April 5, 1979.
Bill is survived by his wife of 42 years, Deon Smyth, their children, Deidre Gauch (Mark) and William P. Smyth of Tiverton, his daughter, Lauri Atkinson-Esposito (Philip) of Texas, his brother, Harry Smyth (Diane) of Newport.
Bill — or “Papa” will be dearly missed by his young grandsons, Brody and Myles Gauch. They were the light of his life, and he spent as much time with them as he possibly could. Even when he wasn’t feeling well, he’d find ways to connect with them — like stocking up on bait, buckling them into their car seats, and heading out to go fishing at the local ponds. Bill wanted nothing more than to put a smile on those little faces.
With his grandsons, he continued with the family traditions he established decades earlier with his now-grown children and looked forward to annual trips to Santa’s Village in New Hampshire and, locally, to Edaville Railroad. He was an avid collector of model trains, and he could never resist adding to his Hot Wheels inventory. Bill was a kid at heart and he provided Brody and Myles with so many fun memories that will carry them throughout their lives.
Always ready with a joke to share, Bill loved making others laugh. He was a true role model for how to live one’s life with purpose and joy, always appreciating the simple things that add up to a life well lived.
Bill was selfless and loved his family more than anything else in the world and was not ready to leave them. He courageously fought both Hodgkin’s and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma for 6 years and even on the last days of his life, he continued to say, “I’m not giving up!”
Bill was loved deeply by his brothers- and sisters-in-law who provided immense support to the family for the past six years and especially during his final weeks of life.
Billy was preceded in death by his parents, William and Gertrude Smyth and his sister, Dianne Chandler.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made in William’s memory to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, www.stjude.org/donate
Calling hours will be held Saturday, April 17, 2021 from 12:00 PM to 3:00 PM at Hambly Funeral Home, 30 Red Cross Avenue, Newport — immediately followed by a Memorial Service.