American Veteran 01

Senior Chief Charles Richard Smith

August 20, 1953 ~ April 30, 2022 (age 68)


Senior Chief Charles Richard Smith, Retired USN, 68, of Ooltewah, TN passed away Saturday, April 30, 2022 at his home.  He was born in Chattanooga, TN on August 20th 1953. He graduated from Chattanooga Valley High School in 1971.  He entered the Delayed Entry Program on January 20th, 1981. Reported to Recruit Training Center Orlando, FL. on February 9th 1981 followed by Basic Electricity and Electronics at Naval Training Center Orlando.


He reported to Submarine School Groton, CT. in June 1981 attending Basic Enlisted Submarine Training and Graduating 1st in his class of NN on August 20th 1981.  He then attended Underwater Fire Control class “A” and “C” schools completing his advanced training for MK 113 Mod 9 Fire Control System employed on Ballistic Missile Submarines at that time.  He was also advanced to Fire Control Technician Guns (FTG) Third Class Petty Officer while attending “C” school.


 In January of 1983 Petty Officer Smith reported to USS DANIEL BOONE (SSBN 629) (BLUE), which was home ported in Charleston, SC and deployed out of Kings Bay, GA. Also, he advanced to Fire Control Technician Guns (FTG) Second Class Petty Officer.  While assigned to the DANIEL BOONE he completed two Strategic Deterrent patrols on DANIEL BOONE and one on USS SIMON BOLIVAR (SSBN 641).  He returned to Submarine School Groton, CT. in December of 1984 and where he attended MK 117 Fire Control System School for assignment to the USS SAND LANCE (SSN 660) in June 1985.  While on SAND LANCE he was advanced to Fire Control Technician Guns (FTG) First Class Petty Officer served as both Fire Control Division and Deck Division Leading Petty Officer. He made a Mediterranean deployment and an Arctic Ocean under ice deployment participated in two Nuclear Technical Proficiency Inspections one Defense Nuclear Surety Inspection, and one Augmenting Nuclear Technical Proficiency Inspection. 


Petty Officer Smith reported to his first shore duty SENIOR CHIEF FIRE CONTROL TECHNICIAN CHARLES, which was at Mobile Technical Unit Fourteen, Kings Bay, GA. in March 1988 where he was a member of an expert cadre of submarine computer and electronic technicians who performed emergent repairs and maintenance training on board submarines from Charleston, SC. to the Caribbean Sea and Holy Loch, Scotland.  While at MOTU 14 he became a Fire Control Technician Chief Petty Officer.


Chief Smith returned to Submarine School Groton, CT. one last time in March of 1992 and where he attended Combat Control System MK 1 and AN/BSY-1 Fire Control Schools upon graduation he returned to sea in September of 1992 duty on board USS SCRANTON (SSN 756) and served as Combat Systems Department and Fire Control Division Leading Chief Petty Officer.  While on board SCRANTON deployed to the North Atlantic once, the Mediterranean three times, the Arabian Gulf once, and also conducted two Perspective Commanding Officer Operations.  He was promoted to Senior Chief Fire Control Technician July 1996, and transferred to the Staff of COMMANDER SUBMARINE SQUADRON TWENTY TWO in La Maddalana, Sardinia in October 2006 that was embarked on USS SIMON LAKE (AS 33) then moved to USS EMORY S. LAND (AS 39) in June 1999.  During his tour he assisted Submarines and Surface Combatants deployed to the European and Middle Eastern theatres in their weapons logistics operations and Combat System Maintenance in support of ongoing allied forces operations.  He also traveled to Den Helder, Netherlands to assist the Royal Dutch Navy through logistics and training to insure appropriate NATO support of submarine MK 67 mining capabilities.  Returned to United States in January 2000 for duty at COMMANDER NAVY RECRUITING COMMAND (CNRC) Headquarters Millington, TN. In the spring of 2002 he terminated shore duty for on last sea duty tour.  He reported to the USS SAN FRANCISCO (SSN 711) in June of 2002. 


Senior Chief Smith final stop brought him back to Kings Bay, GA. to be an inspector on the COMSUBLANT Weapons Inspection Component team in October 2004 where he completed his twenty six year Naval career.  Throughout his Naval Career he received numerous awards and commendations, including the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with two gold stars and the Navy Achievement Medal with four gold stars.


Following his military career, Mr. Smith worked with Condenser and Boiler Tools in East Ridge for 11 years, retiring in 2020.  He was a member of Kingsland Methodist Church in Kingsland, GA and attended the East Ridge Church of the Nazarene.  In his younger years he enjoyed scuba diving, swimming, and snorkeling.  He loved his family, traveling, watching Star Trek, was fascinated in NASA and Aerospace, and he enjoyed working on and troubleshooting computers.  He was a NASCAR fan who loved to follow Jeff Gordon.  He will be dearly missed by his family and friends.


He was preceded in death by his parents, Lois Guffey and Ernest Smith.


Survivors include his wife of 36 years, Mary Steedley Smith; four children, Jessica Smith Craig, Stephen Baker, Michele (Victor) Duggard, Kelly (Chad) Eller; special niece, Ashley Steedley; brother, Tim (Rochelle) Smith; sisters, Teresa Worley and Tiffany Smith; six grandchildren, Chasity Baker, Renee Duggard, Jacob Duggard, Jackson Eller, Victoria Craig, and Katie Eller; great granddaughter, Lilah Rose Courtney; niece, Erica Godfrey; nephew, Todd Smith; and many other nieces and nephews.


Condolences may be shared at


Funeral services will be held Thursday, May 5, 2022 at 12:30p.m. in the South Crest Chapel with Pastor Andy Keffer officiating.


Interment will follow in the Chattanooga National Cemetery with Full Military Honors provided by the United States Navy and the American Legion Post 95.


The family will receive friends Wednesday, May 4, 2022 from 5-8p.m. and Thursday from 11a.m. until the funeral at 12:30p.m. at the South Crest Chapel of Lane Funeral Home and Crematory, Rossville, GA.



To send flowers to Senior Chief Charles Richard Smith's family, please visit our floral store.


May 4, 2022

5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Lane Funeral Home and Crematory-South Crest
833 Chickamauga Ave
Rossville, GA 30741

Funeral Service
May 5, 2022

12:30 PM
Lane Funeral Home and Crematory-South Crest
833 Chickamauga Ave
Rossville, GA 30741

Video is available for this event

Interment following funeral service
May 5, 2022

Chattanooga National Cemetery
1200 Bailey Avenue
Chattanooga, TN

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