On September 24, 2021 the world was robbed of Steve Smart (always a Steve, never a Stephen) who passed away peacefully at home on the island of Kauaʻi, HI, at the far-too-early age of 67, finally yielding to a cancer that he endured to the end with his inimitable, irreverent sense of humor.
Steve was born on March 15, 1954 in Birmingham, England to Jillian (later Ashford) and Rowland Smart (both deceased). One of four siblings brought up by a mostly-single mum, he was at early risk of becoming an uncontrollable juvenile delinquent, but recognized the signs well enough to enroll in the British Royal Air Force, aged 16. After serving 22+ years, and with a successful career in communications and radar under his belt, he worked for Mitsubishi/Apricot before being recruited by a friend into NetApp (formerly Network Appliance), based in UK but headquartered in Silicon Valley, California.
A business trip to NetApp’s headquarters in the late 90’s included one nostalgic dinner with an old friend not seen for 15+ years. Eventually, after five years of occasional business trips (and much to their mutual surprise), a ‘September’ romance was born. Steve and Louise (Barnfield) married in 2007 and relocated to Kauaʻi in 2012, where Steve enjoyed an active retirement mostly on the golf course with numerous like-minded buddies, or at a 19th hole with a cold beer in his hand.
The sudden death of his much younger sister Susan Thomas in 2019 affected him greatly. However, his two brothers Michael Smart and David Lees survive him, as well as his aunt Sandra Symonds, cousins, and many friends on both sides of the pond. Steve’s devastated widow Louise will always resent being denied a couple more decades with her soulmate, but will treasure the 16 year ride they shared.
In his typical no-fuss style, Steve’s ashes will be quietly and privately scattered in Hanalei Bay. A suitably celebratory gathering of his many friends will be arranged at a later date, to laugh and remember the wise-cracking, fun-loving British bloke who deserved many more years on this earth.
The family is extremely grateful to everyone at Kauaʻi Hospice for their care and support over recent months. So donations, if desired, in Steve’s memory would be very much appreciated: Kauaʻi Hospice, 4457 Paheʻe Street, Lihue, HI 96766 or online at kauaihospice.org.
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