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Subject: Charles Coburn Smith Jr., World War II veteran

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Date Posted: November 14, 2002 10:26:44 EDT

Brig. Gen. Charles Coburn Smith Jr., a highly decorated World War II veteran, died Nov. 7. He was 95.

Smith, a 1931 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., was awarded the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star and numerous other honors during a military career spanning three decades with service in England, Algeria, Italy, Austria and Korea.

Smith was born in Lucena, Philippines, where his father, Charles Coburn Smith, a native of Columbus, Ind., was a colonel in the Philippine constabulary.

At age 10, he returned to the United States with his parents, attended high school in Oakland, Calif., and enrolled in the California National Guard before winning an appointment to West Point in 1927.

During World War II Smith commanded 5th Army special troops in North Africa and Italy, winding up as commanding officer of U.S. special troops in Austria in June 1945.

After the war, he taught U.S. foreign policy and organization at the Army War College in Carlisle, Penn., and served at the U.S. Embassy in Paris.

Smith was promoted to brigadier general while stationed in Korea in June 1956.

After Smith retired from the military in June 1961, he became the development officer for fund-raising at Lakeside School in Seattle, a private academy whose graduates in subsequent years included Microsoft Corp. cofounders Paul Allen and Bill Gates.

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