Smith, Jr., George R.

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Dr. George R. ‘Bob’ Smith Jr. passed away on February 18, 2023, at the age of 96, with his family by his side. We miss him already.

A native of Caswell County, North Carolina, Bob was born on January 14, 1927, the eldest child of George R. Smith, Sr., and Sarah Louise Jones. He was preceded in death by his parents, sister, Marjorie Handy, and brothers, William H. Smith and J. Cecil Smith.

Bob and his wife, Mildred, stopped in Shawsville, Virginia in 1954, when he was in his last year of residency at Medical College of Virginia, and asked if the town needed a doctor. The rest is history or perhaps divine intervention.

After a stint in the U.S. Navy, Bob attended the University of North Carolina and Harvard Medical School. Although forever loyal to those organizations, he gave generously to Virginia Tech for the rest of his life. Go Hokies!

Notwithstanding his “Harvard” skills, Bob was most proud of his “country doctor” credentials, founding the Alleghany Clinic in 1955, and welcoming Dr. C.W. Taylor, Jr., to the practice in 1957. He worked tirelessly throughout a 42-year career as a family physician, during which time he commonly made house calls, delivered babies, and conducted countless free-of-charge physicals for local high school athletes. While he appreciated his peers’ praise, having been elected to lead a number of prominent organizations and awarded more accolades than his humbleness would allow us to list here, Bob was most proud of the many patients whose lives he personally touched throughout Shawsville and the surrounding counties.

But for his commitment to his practice, Bob would most certainly have been a great (or, at least, a very good) golfer. Although greatness was never achieved, it did not dampen his desire to play, immensely enjoying the time with his golfing buddies.

All things considered, however, Bob’s most cherished time was spent with his wife (of 73 years) and family, especially enjoying beach vacations and teaching his children to swim and, importantly, how to float on their backs. While he may now be gone, his spirit lives on in each of his children, George R. Smith III (Melinda) and Julia Stewart (Barry) of Shawsville, Mary Beth Bode (John) of Chattanooga, Tennessee, and Linda Paulk of Portland, Oregon, together with his nine (9) grandchildren and eight (8) great-grandchildren, all of whom knew him affectionately as G-daddy.

Bob was a Mason and active in Scottish Rite and Shriners during his life.

Visitation will be February 22, 2023, from 5-7 pm at Horne Funeral Home. Funeral Services will be Thursday, February 23, 2023 at 11 am at White Memorial United Methodist Church.