He immediately enlisted in the United States Navy on June 16, 1975, attended Basic Training at Naval Recruit Training Command Great Lakes, IL and attended a three-week course of instruction at the Apprentice Training Battalion at Naval Training Center, Great lakes, IL, where he was meritoriously advanced to E-2 / Fireman Apprentice. His assignments include over 12 years of sea duty as a Boiler Technician onboard the following ships: William M. Wood (DD-715), USS Mount Whitney (LCC-20), USS Puget Sound (AD-38), USS Coral Sea (CV-43), USS Lawrence (DDG-4), and USS Kalamazoo (AOR-6).
Shore duty assignments include: Shore Intermediate Maintenance Activity, Naval Station, Norfolk, Va., Naval Training Center, Great Lakes, IL., and his last duty station Commander Regional Support Group, Naval Station, Mayport, FL. where he served as a Type Desk Maintenance Broker, Type Desk Officer, and Maintenance Department Leading Chief Petty Officer where he retired on Nov.30, 1999 after 24 years as an E-9 / Master Chief Boiler Technician.
He joined the VFW at Post 8488 in Lenox, Pa. shortly after retirement and in 2005 transferred to the Donald S. Reinert VFW Post 7293 in Whitehall, Pa. where he became a Life Member. His eligibility for VFW membership was in 1989 where he received the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal in support of Operation Earnest Will (Persian Gulf) and the Southwest Asia Service Medal in support of Desert Shield / Desert Storm. He retired on May 25, 2019 as a Commissioned Boiler Inspector Director and Chief Boiler Inspector for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Labor & Industry, Bureau of Occupational and Industrial Safety after 20 years of State Civil Service. He is married to Deborah Sue Harris Smith who is a past four term District 8 VFW Auxiliary President. He is the proud father of four children and 11 grandchildren.
He is a recipient of the Meritorious Service Medal, three Navy Achievement Medals, the Meritorious Unit Citation, five Good Conduct Medals, National Defense Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Southwest Asia Service Medal, and six Sea Service Ribbons.