William J. Smith, of Hornell

HORNELL-William J. Smith, son of Marjorie (Ford) Smith and William Smith, passed away unexpectedly early Wednesday morning (April 22, 2015).


William was born on January 5, 1933 in Dansville, New York and was a graduate of Dansville High School. He went on to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in Geology from Geneseo University and a Masters in Education from Alfred University. In the early 1950’s he joined the US Army and was a trained communication specialist. After his service, he was hired as an Earth Science teacher in the Hornell City School District where he taught for more than 30 years. In that time, he held several positions in the Hornell Teachers Association including treasurer and president. He was also the head of the Science Department for many years. He performed in many school and community stage productions.
William was an avid reader and never far from a good book. He had an abiding love of movies and travel. He loved animals and his family. Quietly brilliant, William once won at a Trivial Pursuit game as quickly as possible so that he could go back to his book.
William was preceded in death by his wife Hildreth “Mickey” (Sharretts) Smith and his son Robert William Smith. He is survived by his sister, Neale Clifford; his daughter, Neale Bacon and her husband Michael, their children, Joshua (Seema), Jacob (Lindsay), Benjamin, and Patrick; his daughter, Hildreth Volonts and her husband, Jani, her children, Jessica, Eric (Julie), Elizabeth (Richard) Harris, Erin, and Justine; the children of his son Robert Smith and Diana Hopson: Megan (Michael) Burley, Devon, and Dustin; his son, Mark Smith and his wife Meghan, his children, Abbigail and Scott; his special son, Keith Guthrie and his wife, Jennifer, their children, Zachary and Kilauren; and 12 great grandchildren.
Calling hours are 2- 4 and 7-9 p.m. Wednesday (April 29, 2015) at the Bishop & Johnson Funeral Home, Inc., 285 Main St., Hornell. A funeral mass will be celebrated at Our Lady of the Valley Parish at St. Ann’s Church, in Hornell, at 10 a.m. Thursday (April 30, 2015) with a graveside service to follow at St. Mary’s Cemetery, Town of Fremont. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to either Our Lady of the Valley Parish, 27 Erie Ave., Hornell or the Hornell Area Humane Society, 7649 Industrial Park Road, Hornell, N.Y. 14843. Envelopes for memorial contributions will be available at the funeral Home.
Online condolences or remembrances of William are welcomed at www.bishopandjohnsonfuneralhome.com.