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John Vertrice Smith Jr.

February 17, 1949 May 11, 2018
John Vertrice  Smith Jr.
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Obituary for John Vertrice Smith Jr.

J.V. Smith was born on February 17, 1949 in Overton, Texas, the first child of five born to John Vertrice Smith, Sr. and Mae Louis (nee: Howard) Smith. He was born again into the family of our LORD as a young man through the waters of Holy Baptism (Titus 3:5-7). As an interesting note: J.V. was not a church going person until later in life.

J.V. grew up in New London, Texas and graduated from West Rusk High School in 1967. He attended Kilgore Jr. College and eventually moved to the Dallas area. He was the first black male hired by the Dallas Fire Department as a mechanic on June 2, 1969. J.V. was well respected in the DFD. Most of his career he served the citizens of Oak Cliff. J.V. met Cheryl through the “Lone Star Van Club” in 1976 and they were married in 1980. Cheryl was a member of Grace Lutheran Church in Oak Cliff and became a member of Cross of Christ Lutheran Church where their two daughters attended school. On October 16, 1972, he transitioned into the operations side of the DFD. Overall, he diligently served the Dallas Fire Department for 43 years until his retirement on January 15, 2013. Upon retirement, he joined the Dallas Retired Fire Fighters and served in the DRFFA Honor Guard where he not only honored his fellow Dallas firefighters at their passing but also traveled to other areas of the state with the DRFFA Honor Guard to pay tribute to those who died in the Line of Duty in surrounding departments (Waco Memorial Service for the firefighters who died in West which included DFD Captain Kenny Harris and the Houston Memorial Service).

During his off-duty time from the fire station, he owned and operated an Auto Repair and Transmission shop in Oak Cliff. He passed his time by working with car repairs and worked at the City of Oak Leaf doing maintenance. He loved attending his daughter’s soccer games. He also loved working in the yard and tinkering around in his new Garage/shed. J.V. always enjoyed the Van Club and had hopes of restoring the old van. He also desired to restore some classic cars which he owned.

On March 7, 2004 J.V. confirmed his faith in our LORD Jesus Christ at the altar of Cross of Christ Lutheran Church, DeSoto, TX. He enjoyed serving his LORD Jesus Christ with his talents by volunteering as an Usher for the Church and Chairman of the Board of Properties.

In the last years J.V. battled Leukemia and died from complications and infections due to the effects of Leukemia.

On Friday night May 11, 2018 J.V. quietly grasped the hands of angels who escorted him to the side of his Savior, Jesus Christ where he awaits a reunion with: wife, Cheryl Smith; sons: Steven and Remarcus Smith; daughters: Kaneatha, Brandi and Christina Smith, four grandchildren, and numerous nephews, nieces, other relatives and friends.

The family of J.V. invites memorial gifts be made in his name to:
Cross of Christ Lutheran Church
512 N. Cockrell Hill Rd.
De Soto, Texas 75115

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society:
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Previous Events





6:00 PM 5/16/2018 6:00:00 PM - 8:00 PM 5/16/2018 8:00:00 PM
Jaynes Memorial Chapel

811 S. Cockrell Hill Road
Duncanville, TX 75137

Jaynes Memorial Chapel
811 S. Cockrell Hill Road Duncanville 75137 TX
United States





1:00 PM 5/17/2018 1:00:00 PM
Cross of Christ Lutheran

512 N. Cockrell Hill Road
DeSoto, Texas 75115

Cross of Christ Lutheran
512 N. Cockrell Hill Road DeSoto 75115 Texas
United States

Cemetery Details


Laurel Land Memorial Park Final Resting Place

6000 S. R.L. Thornton Freeway
Dallas, Texas 75232

6000 S. R.L. Thornton Freeway Dallas 75232 Texas
United States

Memorial Contribution

Cross of Christ Lutheran

512 N. Cockrell Hill Road
DeSoto, Texas 75115

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

Donor Services
PO Box 98018
Washington, DC 20090-8018

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