Noted Intelligence Expert Norman Smith Will Receive Full Military Funeral
by KRISTEN ARMSTRONG, Staff Writer
|Former deputy chief of
operations in the CIA's counterintelligence service Norman Smith died
Memorial Day, May 26, at age 83, of congestive heart failure and
complications from Guillain-Barre Syndrome, which he had battled since
A burial with full military honors will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 19 at 1 p.m. at the Arlington National Cemetery's Old Post Chapel.
Smith was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., and after teenage service in the New Jersey State Cavalry, was drafted into the U.S. Army out of high school.
He was selected for the Army Specialized Training Program and studied engineering at Purdue University until the program was terminated in early 1944.
He was reassigned to the 407th Infantry Regiment, 102nd Ozark Division. He served as a platoon guide with a rifle platoon in Europe, marching from Normandy to the Elbe River.
He was directly commissioned 2nd Lt. during the Korean War and retired as a Reserve Colonel in 1980. He was awarded a Bronze Star, Purple Heart and many other decorations.
In 1951, Smith joined the Central Intelligence Agency as a junior officer trainee assigned to analyze Soviet armaments. In 1960, he was appointed to chair an intelligence community committee tasked to monitor missile activity outside the Soviet Union. In that position, he set in motion the procedure to inform President Kennedy of the Cuban missile crisis.
“He was a brilliant patriot and hero,” said his wife Carolyn Tillotson-Smith in a recent interview.
In 1968, Smith was reassigned to the counterintelligence staff's directorate of operation. When the counterintelligence staff was dissolved in 1975-76, he became deputy chief of operations.
He retired in 1978 after serving as executive director of a task force to modernize and reform management procedures within the directorate of operations.
For the next 10 years, he worked as a consultant.
Smith received his undergraduate degree at Colgate University, where he graduated magna cum laude with honors in political science. At Colgate, Smith was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and was a member of Lambda Chi Alpha social fraternity.
He went on to study at the National University of Mexico in Mexico City, Heidelberg University in Germany, New York University and Georgetown University. He completed his Ph.D. at the London School of Economics, while serving a foreign posting with the CIA.
He was fluent in Spanish and had a working knowledge of French, German and Russian.
Smith was deeply involved in community service and activism. He was a past president of the International Order of the Knights of the Roundtable in Arlington and treasurer of the Arts Club in Washington, D.C.
He also was a member of DACOR (Diplomatic and Consular Officers Retired); CIRA (Central Intelligence Retiree' Association); AFIO (Assn. of Former Intelligence Officers); The Fairfax Hunt Club; Evergreen Country Club; and Ruritan Club of Aldie.
He was house precinct chair of the Fairfax County Republican Party, and was a member of the Emmanuel and Trinity Episcopal Churches in Middleburg and Upperville.
Smith was married for 22 years to Tillotson-Smith, with whom he shared their circa-1723 home, “Fairfax Found,” documented to be the first dwelling in the United States owned by Thomas Lord Fairfax.
“We chose to move to Middleburg, and move the log house accordingly, because we had been long-devoted spectators of the steeplechase,” Tillotson-Smith said. “[Norman] adored our home and our property.”
Norman Smith, the former deputy chief of operations for the CIA's counterintelligence service, died May 26 and will be buried Aug. 19 at Arlington National Cemetery.