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First Name: Richard

Last Name: Smith

Birthplace: Boston, MA, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Navy (present)


Middle Name: Wilder

Date of Birth: 17 October 1903

Date of Death: 30 May 1981

Rank or Rate: Rear Admiral

Years Served:
Richard Wilder Smith

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)
•  Korean War (1950 - 1953)


Richard Wilder Smith
Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy

Richard Wilder Smith was born on 17 October 1903 in Boston, MA. Smith's early education was in Braintree, MA, where he graduated from Thayer Academy.

Smith then attended and graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy. After numerous assignments and promotions, by the start of World War II, he was Superintendent of all Production Departments at the Charleston Naval Shipyard. During the war, he served as Commander of the destroyer USS O'Bannon in the Battle of Leyte Gulf, considered the largest naval battle of World War II, as well as one of the largest in naval history. He served in numerous other destroyer commands, as well as other assignments.

After the war, he was promoted to Rear Admiral and was awarded the Legion of Merit and two Bronze Stars for action in the Pacific. He also served in the Korean War and shortly after that conflict ended, retired to private life in 1957.

Death and Burial

Rear Admiral Richard Wilder Smith died on 30 May 1981 in Wadmalaw Island, SC. He is buried at St. John's Episcopal Parish Cemetery in Johns Island, SC.

Honoree ID: 3096   Created by: MHOH




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