Richard Herbert Smith

March 9, 1945 ~ January 30, 2024 (age 78) 78 Years Old
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Richard Smith Obituary

Richard Herbert Smith, son of the late Herbert Lafyette Smith and Sarah Moye Smith Moorehead was born March 9, 1945 in Wrightsville, GA. He attended high school and was the quarterback of the state champion football team for Morgan County High School. He then went on to get his bachelor's degree from Louisiana State University, and his master’s degree from the University of Florida.

He was united in holy matrimony to Clara Wood Smith, in August of 1964.

In 1970, Richard began his career with the UF Cooperative Extension Service. In 1978, he transferred to the University of Georgia (UGA) Cooperative Extension Service. During his tenure with the UGA Cooperative Extension Service, Richard served in Statesboro, Cedartown and Columbus. While serving as extension director, he also served as an adjunct faculty member of the UGA Fanning Leadership Center from 1990 until 1999.

Richard is no stranger to public service. Prior to being elected as the state representative for House District 131 (currently House District 139). Richard served asInterim City Manager for the Columbus Consolidated Government. Richard served as a Columbus City Councilor,as an At-large post, serving one year as budget chair. Richard was a founding board member of the Chattahoochee Valley Community Foundation. Richard was the president of the Chattahoochee Valley Fair and Exposition. Richard was a member of the Columbus Downtown Rotary Club. Richard was a member of the First Baptist Church of Columbus.

Richard was first elected to the Georgia House of Representatives on November 2, 2004, and was sworn in on January 10, 2005. Richard was representing portions of Muscogee and Harris counties. Representative Smith previously served as the chairman of the House Insurance Committee from 2011 to 2020. In 2020, he was appointed as the chairman of the House Rules Committee. He alsoserved on other House committee assignments during his time in office.Richard was also on the Executive Committee of the National Council of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL) serving faithfully. Richard loved representing and serving the state of Georgia.

Richard is preceded in death by his parents, grandson, Deen Justin Smith, brother in law, Henry Daniel Wood and sister in law, Nora Wood Goodman.

Family was important in his life, and those left to cherish his memory, are his wife Clara Smith of Columbus, Georgia, children Shannon Smith Moore of Columbus, Georgia, Ashley Smith Patterson (Brice) of Waverly Hall, Georgia, and Justin Richard Smith (Tami) of Columbus, Georgia, grandchildren Madison Dobbins (Braden), Greyson Moore (Aly), Colton Patterson, Emma Patterson, Joely Smith, great grand children Lennox Dobbins and Rowan Dobbins, sister Carolyn Bruce (Roger), sister in laws Juanita Pardue and Nancy Wood.

The family will receive friends Sunday, February 4, 2024 from 2:00pm to 4:00pm at McMullen Funeral Home and Crematory. A service for Richard will be Monday, February 5, 2024 at 11am at the First Baptist Church with Dr. Jimmy Elder officiating. Following the service, Richard will be laid to rest in a private ceremony at Park Hill Cemetery with the Georgia State Patrol Honor Guard as the pallbearers. Serving as honorary pallbearers will be the Georgia House of Representatives.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to “The Honorable Richard H. Smith and Clara W. Smith Endowed Scholarship Fund” for the School of Medicine (Columbus) Mercer University in Richard’s name to continue to strengthen the bond between the city of Columbus and Mercer University.

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February 4, 2024

2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
McMullen Funeral Home and Crematory
3874 Gentian Blvd
Columbus, GA 31907

Celebration of Life
February 5, 2024

11:00 AM
First Baptist Church
212 12th St.
Columbus, GA

Private Interment

Parkhill Cemetery, Columbus, Macon


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