GREENSBORO - William L. Smith "Poppy", 96, passed away on Wednesday, September 4, 2019 at the Transitions Hospice Home in Raleigh. The family visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at 12 noon. The funeral service will be held on Monday, September 9, 2019 at First Lutheran Church at 1:00 p.m. with Rev. Jay Hilbinger officiating. Interment will follow at Mountain View United Methodist Church cemetery at 4:00 p.m. in Statesville. William was born in Statesville, NC to the late Zebulon and Lila Bost Smith. He is a US Army World War II Veteran where he served as a radar operator in the Pacific and was the recipient of several medals. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Physics from Guilford College and later obtained his professional engineering license. He worked for Western Electric Company for many years in missile guidance systems. Family was most important to Poppy. He also enjoyed camping, reading and history. He was preceded in death by his parents and loving wife of 51 years, Barbara McLelland; grandson, Patrick Herring; and sisters, Lois Smith and Anne Brinkley. Poppy is survived by his children Julie Smith and Ron Smith of Greensboro, and Dr. Jenny Smith and fiance' Matt Harris of Raleigh; grandchildren Brett Herring, and Mason Smoller; brothers, Carl Smith (Lib) and Ray Smith (Pinkie); and many nieces and nephews. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Purple Heart Homes, Inc, Statesville, NC. Hanes Lineberry North Elm Chapel is serving the Smith family. Online condolences may be made at

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