Cover photo for James C. Smith's Obituary
James C. Smith Profile Photo
1942 James 2023

James C. Smith

April 16, 1942 — July 8, 2023

Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida

James C. Smith peacefully departed this world on July 8, 2023, surrounded by his family.

James was born on April 16, 1942, in Patterson, New Jersey to James and Helen Smith. His family relocated to upstate New York during his early elementary school years. From here James embarked on a journey that would shape his legacy. James was a driven and passionate individual who dedicated his life to the automotive and industrial sector. From humble beginnings, he worked his way up to become a chief executive officer and made a lasting impact on the companies he served. Throughout his outstanding career, he faced challenges head-on with enthusiasm and rose above them with his wit and intelligence. He thrived in an environment that demanded innovation and problem-solving. James's proudest accomplishments lay in his ability to transform struggling businesses into flourishing enterprises. James had an unwavering belief in the potential of people and possessed a remarkable talent for building businesses. His commitment to improving the lives of employees and nurturing their growth was unparalleled.

Beyond his professional endeavors, James possessed a playful nature and a great sense of humor. He adored spending time with his beloved grandkids and creating lasting memories through playing pranks that brought laughter for everyone. His love of animals extended from his loving dogs to family pets and farm animals.

Adventure defined James's leisure time. He traveled extensively for business and pleasure with his loving wife, Jeanette, exploring various countries and embracing new experiences wherever he went. Sailing local and international waters, downhill skiing and racing, taking flight through the skies, or even leaping from perfectly good airplanes—these were just a few examples of how James indulged his appetite for excitement and thrill.

James is predecease by his father, James F. Smith; mother; Helen Smith; and his brothers Richard Smith, Gary Smith, and Robert Smith.

James is survived by his wife of 51 years, Jeanette C. Smith; sons, Richard (Lisa) Smith and David (Nancy) Smith; grandchildren, Brandon Smith, Bradley Smith, Natalie Smith, Madeline Smith, and Zachary Smith; brother, Raymond Smith; and sister Kathleen (Craig) Braman. 

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 AM on July 31, 2023 at Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, Reverend Matthew King Presiding. 

In Lieu of flowers please consider a donation in memory of James to the Alzheimer's Association.

As we bid farewell to James in the physical realm, let us carry forward his spirit of adventure and unwavering commitment to excellence. May his memory continue to inspire us all as we strive for greatness in our own lives.

To order memorial trees in memory of James C. Smith, please visit our tree store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Mass of Christian Burial

Monday, July 31, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church

545 A1A N, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082

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