Matthew E. Smith, patriarch of a large and loving family, died at home Friday, May 29th of natural causes. Born in Grafton, Massachusetts, in 1923, he was the son of Albert and Bessie Smith. He received his Bachelor’s Degree from Harvard University and Master’s Degree from Boston College.
Matt married the love of his life, Adele Guinee, in 1945 and settled to Auburn in 1955 where they raised their family. They moved to Charlton in 2008. Matt was an actuary at John Hancock for several years before following his life’s passion of teaching. His teaching career began in Warren, MA and was followed by 35 years of teaching mathematics at Auburn High School.
After growing up in Grafton during the depression, he left for Harvard University. His years in college were interrupted when he entered the Army Air Corp, serving as a lead navigator and radar bombardier in the South Pacific Theater.
Matt was predeceased by his wife, Adele, in 2016. They were married for 71 years and raised seven children together. He is survived by his sons Daniel and his wife Nancy of Auburn, Stephen and his wife Joan of Milton, FL, and daughters Carolyn Smith of Little Hocking, OH, Melinda Hannan and her husband Kenneth of Charlton, MA, Susan Smith-Scott and her husband Gene Scott of Charlton, Judith Maruca and her husband Francis of Charlton, MA and daughter-in-law Wanda Whitted-Smith of Philadelphia, PA. He is predeceased by his son David Smith, and his brothers Jeremy, Stephen and Christopher. He was adored by his grandchildren, Courtney, Sage, Luke, Chloe, Timothy, Allison, Christopher, Michael, Jacob, Lindsey and Tyler and great grandchildren Jesse, Joseph, Declan, Adele, Dalila, Connor, Camille, Joni and Esme. Matt was a great lover of people and treasured his relationships with his running community, his former students, his Marco Island friends, his many friends in the Auburn and Charlton communities and especially the Wednesday morning breakfast club. He also served his Auburn community as a member of the Conservation Committee and town member representative.
Matt began running after he turned 40, and ran over 60 marathons, two dozen when he was between the ages of 60 and 80. When his running career ended, he took up long distance cycling, covering miles of terrain between Auburn and northern Connecticut. Adele was secretly relieved when his bicycle disappeared from the garage in 2010.
In his own words, “I shall depart this earth envying no one in this world.”
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Matt’s memory to Pernet Family Health Services Inc. at 237 Millbury Street, Worcester, MA 01610.
In alignment with current guidelines, there will be a graveside service with social distancing at Hillside Cemetery in Auburn, MA on Wednesday June 3, 2020 at 11:00 AM, where military honors will be rendered. Funeral arrangements are being made by Britton Funeral Homes, Auburn, MA.