The Rev. Mr. James Avery Smith died on Wednesday, November 30, 2016 at the age of 80 in Northampton, MA. Jim is survived by his wife of 59 years Lois Sayers Smith and his four children, David A. Smith (William Spurlin); Deborah A. McLeod; Emy Berger (Tim); Mark A. Smith (Leslie); and eight grandchildren.
Jim was born in Youngstown, Ohio, moving with his family to Philadelphia, where he graduated from Frankford High School in 1954, Drexel University in 1958, and a Master's of Divinity from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in 1967.
Jim was the first town engineer for the Town of Amherst, professional engineer, registered land surveyor, expert witness in the Massachusetts Land Court, ordained Pastor in the United Church of Christ, and published author and local historian. He served churches in Amherst and Pelham, MA, and as an interim minister at other churches. He was a past member of the Hampshire Church and Ministry Committee in the Hampshire Association. Jim served his country in the U.S. Army from 1958 to 1964 at the rank of captain, and as a civilian, through his volunteer leadership role protesting the war in Vietnam. Jim moved to Amherst in 1971, making it his home for 45 years.
A memorial service was held Dec. 28, at 11 a.m.at South Congregational Church, 1066 S. East Street, Amherst, MA, with a reception to follow. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Church World Service, 475 Riverside Dr., Suite 700, New York, NY 10115.
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