March 31, 1932 ~ April 25, 2020

Born in: Richmond, VA
Resided in: Indianapolis, IN

Paul Howard Smith was born March 31, 1932 to the late Vina Louise Smith-Mitchell and Robert Jennings. He grew up in Richmond, VA and spent much of his youth at his family farm in Emporia, VA. He was the youngest of three children.

He attended Booker T. Washington Elementary School and Maggie L. Walker High School in Richmond, VA. On December 23, 1952 he was united in marriage to Iris Christian and to this union 6 children were born.

He was drafted into the Armed Forces in June of 1952 and soon after voluntarily enlisted. He served his country and spoke fondly of his experiences. He traveled and saw the world. While serving his country he was stationed in Japan, Germany, Alaska and saw combat in the Korean War. He was a paratrooper. He enjoyed jumping from planes so much that he would offer to take other soldiers jumps while taking their money in the process. He had fun playing tricks on his fellow service men and had many stories to tell about his military days. He served his country for more than 16 years and was honorably discharged. Sgt. Smith received the Good Conduct Medal and the Expert Badge for Pistol and Carbine.

Upon Leaving the military he settled in Kentucky and worked factory jobs. He met George Freeman who introduced him to his sister Dorothy. It wasn’t long before Dorothy and Paul were united in marriage on July 8, 1972. To this union one daughter was born. They lived happily in Indianapolis, IN for 47 years. Paul worked for UAW-GM for 18 years and retired in 1999. He was a member of Womack Memorial CME Church where he served as a trustee, steward, and member of the men’s fellowship for 46 years. Bro Paul could be found faithfully sitting on the 2nd pew across from his Dorothy.

On April 25, 2020 he gave up his earthly tabernacle and stepped into glory. He joined his wife Dorothy who proceeded him in death and was reunited with his sons Otis, Ray Howard, Paul Jr., Rondell and his sister Gladys that died a few days prior to him. He leaves to mourn him his children David Smith, Doug Swope, Edith Smith, Michael Smith, Raoul (Theresa) Swope, Renita Swope, Rosemary (James) Thomas, Tamra (Jonathan) Simpson, Toni Hopson, Valarie (Norris) Wright, his brother Raymond Smith, his sister-in-law Ada Brown, his grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and a host of nieces and nephews.

His family will miss his handsome smile, his sweet disposition and his playful ways. He had a knack for giving everyone a nickname that made them feel special. He was a man of faith. At 88 years old he still got on his knees to pray every night. He touched many lives. He leaves behind a lasting legacy of many that will refer to him affectionately as PaPa.

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Guestbook

  1. Gloria & Leroy Williams sending our condolences ti the family at this sorrowful time.

  2. He was father to my brother Rondell. I recall visiting him in Indianapolis many years ago on a cross country trip to family in Virginia. And I spoke with him on the phone several times.

    • My condolences to you and your family. Praying for strength during this time. Hold all the memories close to your heart.

  3. Uncle Paul , I’ve never met anyone that had a lasting impression from the moment I met him ! Heaven truly has gained a Angel

  4. Sending my condolences to my dear friend Renita and her family during this difficult time. May God continue to comfort you all.

  5. I’m gonna really miss my Brother Smith. His sweet and gentle spirit always warmed my heart. Thank you for teaching me the finance ropes on our church’s steward board. Heaven has gained an angel. May God be with the family and give you peace. Love you always

  6. Uncle Paul was one of my favorite uncles. He always called me his “Golden Girl” because of my blonde hair. I really enjoyed the time spent with him when we surprised him on his 80th Birthday in Indianapolis. We talked on the periodically when I was at Edith’s whenever he called her. Love and Miss you! Your “Golden Girl Jane “

  7. Uncle Paul was one of my favorite uncles. He always called me his “Golden Girl” because of my blonde hair. I really enjoyed the time spent with him when we surprised him on his 80th Birthday in Indianapolis. We talked on the periodically when I was at Edith’s whenever he called her. Love and Miss you! Your “Golden Girl Jane “

  8. .We will remember Cousin Paul and miss those Holiday phone call to Him and Dorothy. Our Heartfelt Condolences, Prayers and Love to each of You..

  9. Still lifting you (all) up in prayer! #SendingMyCondolences #SendingLoveAndHugs 🙏🏾😘
    Love,
    Cousin LaTia Freeman Gates (Birmingham, AL/Athens, AL)

  10. My heartfelt condolences to the family. When Renita first introduced me to Mr. Smith I knew he was special. He got his mansion and his wings! Praise God🙏🏽

  11. Bro. Paul was one of the nicest men I ever met. I met him & Ms. Dorothy when I joined Womack some 40 yrs. ago. To know him is to love him, my heart will forever miss them both . My condolences to his family.

  12. Cousin Paul was so kind to me when I had a job interview over 20 years ago in Indianapolis. He encouraged me prior to the interview, took me to breakfast, & made sure I was at the interview on time. I didn’t get the job but enjoyed the time spent with Cousin Dorothy & Paul & my Indianapolis family. Sending love, hugs & continued prayers for your strength.

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