IMAGES OF LIFE
JAMES EDWARD SMITH (Smitty) was born January 01, 1949, in Kansas City, Missouri. His parents, Edmond H. Smith, Sr. and Jeanette Dupree Smith, were blessed with six children.
James was educated in the KCK school system; he attended Dunbar Elementary, Northeast Jr. High and graduated from Sumner High School in 1966. He took classes at the local Junior College as well as Kansas University. In 1969 he joined the U.S. Army, serving a 2-year tour of duty in Germany before being honorably discharged.
Smitty married Cornelia Chinn (Connie) on December 24, 1973. They became the proud parents od Kwamea, Raphael and Hilari.
As a child, James was an active member of Olivet Baptist Church where he was baptized and received early Christian nurturing. He was ordained as a deacon at Eighth Street Baptist in 1997. Later he became a charter member of Peace and Fellowship Community Church where he served faithfully until his health prevented him from doing so. James was a member of Prince Hall Grand Lodge, F. & A.M. of Kansas; he was locally affiliated with Olive Branch Lodge #74.
Smitty had a keen sense of fashion that led to employment at several retail businesses including Leader Clothing Store and Harold Pener Menswear. He most recently worked 20+ years at the U.S. Postal Service before taking disability retirement in 2002. In his leisure time, appreciation for music motivated him to DJ at social events and gatherings. His motto was “If the moment calls for music…then you should call Smitty!” He was a hard worker who tried to excel in everything he did. Smitty was a very charismatic individual who enjoyed life to its fullest. He was an avid sports fan. When circumstances would permit, his “ride” of choice was a Cadillac. He made his presence known wherever he happened to be. He’ll be remembered for that big smile and outgoing personality.
JAMES EDWARD SMITH made his journey from earthly labor to heavenly reward on Sunday evening, May 27, 2018. He was preceded in death by his parents; son, James Collins; daughter, Kawana Smith; brothers Maurice Smith and Willard Dupree.
James will be sorrowfully but lovingly missed by his wife of 44 years, Connie Smith; son, Raphael Smith; daughters, Kwamea (Ahmal, Sr.) Edgely and Hilari (Demond) Perris; grandchildren, Ahmal, Jr., Akelah and Shaheem; brothers, Edmond Smith, Jr. and Tilford Smith; sister, Sonya Smith-Littlejohn; and a host of relatives and friends.