Arthur R. Smith, age 81, passed away on Thursday, March 27, 2014, at his residence in Wantage. Born in New York City to the late Arthur A. and Gertrude (Schabrick) Smith, Art grew up in Bergen County and graduated from Westwood High School in 1950. He received his bachelor’s degree in 1954 and, subsequently, his master’s degree in School Administration and Supervision from Montclair State University. Art was inducted into the MSU Athletic Hall of Fame in 1979 for both football and track. Art began his teaching career in 1954 at Westwood High School, where he was a social studies teacher and assistant football coach. He was invited to try out with the Chicago Cardinals, but chose to serve in the United States Army from 1956 to 1958. He returned to Westwood HS and in 1962, he joined the faculty at Kinnelon High School where he served as Assistant Principal from 1964 to 1966 and Principal from 1967 to 1969. In 1969, he became the Principal of Wayne Hills High School until 1971 when he was appointed Superintendent of Schools at High Point Regional High School. He retired from High Point in 1993 as the longest serving superintendent, and was loved and well-respected by his staff, administration, students, parents, and the community at large. He was an adjunct professor at Montclair State University from 1995-1996. In October 2007, Art was honored by the High Point Board of Education when they renamed their athletic field the Arthur R. Smith Athletic Complex. Art served as president of the Sussex County Superintendents Organization and President of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association and was a member of Phi Delta Kappa Honor Education Society. He was recipient of the Sussex County Hall of Fame MDA Award for Scholar/Athlete in 1990, the Distinguished Service Award from the New Jersey Association of School Administrators in 1993, and an Award of Honor from the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association in 1999. Art also served for many years on the Board of Directors at the Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative and was a member of the Rotary Club of Wallkill Valley since 1971 where he was past president and a Paul Harris Fellow recipient.
In 1956, he married Barbara J.(Murray), who predeceased him in 1996. Art is survived by his wife of 15 years, Mary Elizabeth; his son, Scott A. Smith and his wife, Lisa, and their son, Alexander, of Wantage; his daughter, Melanie LiTrenta and her husband, Gary, and their children, Gavin, Danielle, and Michelle of Wantage; his step-daughter, C.J. DeMarco of Toms River and her children, Sarah, Michael and his wife, Jena, and their children Connor and Trayson, Matthew, Timothy, and Danielle; his step-daughter, Suzanne Hopkins and her husband, Daniel, and their sons Zack and Sean of the township of Washington; many beloved nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews; and his beloved companion, Cookie. Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 5, 2014, at the Pinkel Funeral Home, 31 Bank Street (Route 23), Sussex, NJ. Interment Clove Cemetery. Friends may pay their respects to the family on Friday, April 4, 2014, from 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations may be made in Art’s memory to the Arthur R. and Barbara J. Smith Memorial Scholarship, Attn: High Point Regional Guidance Dept., 299 Pidgeon Hill Road, Sussex, NJ 07461, or to Compassionate Care Hospice, 350 Sparta Avenue, Suite B2, Sparta, NJ 07871. Online condolences may be offered to the family at www.pinkelfuneralhome.com.
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