It was held at Sarah Jane Johnson Memorial Church in Johnson City. The church seats about 350 people and it was standing room only as the Smith family, many police officers from our area, politicians and other community members paid their respects to the patrolman.
Smith had been on the Johnson City police squad for 18 and a half years.
When he was younger, he raced BMX bikes, played golf and was a volunteer firefighter with the Prospect Terrace Fire Company. However, he always wanted to be a police officer, which was a privilege for him.
His uncle gave the family eulogy.
"At work, as with his family, he was able to light up a room just by coming in. He had an infectious smile, a great sense of humor, everybody enjoyed him. His colleagues enjoyed him. The people around him enjoyed him, his sense of humor and personality," said uncle John McConegly.
Johnson City Police Chief Joe Zikuski also spoke. He says he was a masterful detective as he worked cases.
In 2002, Officer Smith was awarded a certificate of valor after rescuing a boy from a burning apartment building.
"After believing that all occupants had been evacuated it was learned that there was still a four year-old child in one of the burning buildings. It was at this point that DW demonstrated his true character. With no regard for his own safety, DW entered that building and searched for the 4 year-old child. A short time later he emerged from the building carrying that child to safety," said Zikuski.
Governor George Pataki then named Smith officer of the year for his valor.
Officer Smith is survived by his wife and 11-year-old son.
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