Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A Dear Friend Passes

Dr. William H. Smith - "Doc" (1919-2008)
It is with great sadness and deep regret that we inform you of the peaceful passing of Dr. William H. Smith, known to countless hundreds simply as "Doc." A valued friend to all, Doc continuously led Katonah Troop 1 since 1955. Teacher, healer, brother Scout and friend, Doc touched our lives in fantastic and positive ways that will continue to live on through all of us. Words simply cannot express our emotions at this time of great loss. In lieu of flowers, donations in Dr. Smith's memory may be made to the William H. Smith Memorial Fund, 171 Bedford Rd., Katonah, NY 10536.



Scoutmaster "Doc" Smith pins Dave Kane's Eagle award - 2008

Setting up Camp - Boston Freedom Trail - 1997

Dinner at Doc's Cabin in Maine - 2002

Canoeing on the Saco River - 2002

"In not knowing one's path through life is quite the dark trail traveled. Sadly when your guiding light goes out do not be taken back, but reflect in on your fondest memories and use them as strength. For that light which you and so many others have followed has already blazed the trail and it is now you who must become the light and guide those who follow after."

Dr. Smith (“Doc”) was born in New York City on Dec. 16, 1919 and was raised in Cold Spring. He attended the University of Rochester School of Medicine and interned in pediatrics at the University of Chicago and the University of Pennsylvania. During World War II he served in the Army in the medical corps.
In 1950, he settled in Katonah to work as the first pediatrician at the newly formed Katonah Medical Group. He practiced with the group for 40 years and was the longtime Katonah-Lewisboro School District physician, a job he continued for years after retirement from the medical group.
An interest in Scouting led to his role as Scoutmaster of Katonah Troop 1, a position he held for the past 52 years. During those years he attended national and international jamborees, hiked miles of trails including some in the Swiss Alps, was a leader and mentor to thousands of boys, and guided 63 of his scouts to the rank of Eagle.
Dr. Smith was a longtime member of the Katonah Rotary Club where he held the office of sergeant at arms and was a past recipient of the club’s Stan Schaefer Award. He was a fixture at the club’s fund-raisers and rarely missed meetings even when away from his home club. Dr. Smith was a member of the Katonah United Methodist Church where he often played his harmonica during services.
Dr. Smith loved spending time at his camp on Lovewell Pond in Fryeburg, Maine, and especially looked forward to the yearly canoe trip on the Saco River with the Scout troop, his family said. Known for his different sense of humor, quirky sayings, extemporaneous poetry and harmonica serenades, he will be greatly missed by generations of patients, Scouts and friends.
Donations in Dr. Smith's memory may be made to the William H. Smith Memorial Fund, 171 Bedford Rd., Katonah, NY 10536.