Carlton R Smith “Carl”
The Ignorant Grandfather
Mr. Smith, 64 , was born in 1949 and married his second love Kay in 1970. He met her in 1967. he is the father of three children. They are from oldest to youngest: Ann, whom when he first saw her at birth his feet left the ground and he fell in love for the third time. His feet have remained in the air since then. With his second child Lisa’s birth he ascended a little higher falling for the fourth love of his life. And with the advent of his one true son, he rose on his bliss still higher and was entranced by his fifth great love.
He now has four grandchildren twins from Ann and a girl and boy from his daughter Lisa. These are his “precious butterflies” watched as they flutter in and out of his life, day by day. He floats a little higher in his bliss at each of their appearances and their unfolding from their individual chrysalises’. Growing in beauty and strength day by day. Now he has nine cherished loves in his life. The grandchildren range from about twenty to about fourteen.
He was born between Tarboro and Rocky Mount, North Carolina. The first of his lineage to ever be born in a hospital. He was the son of parents who had “done it all,” to keep the family fed, clothed, housed and together. Shortly after his birth his father broke away from share-cropping and moved to Virginia in 1951. His father became a worker in a shipyard for the U.S. Navy. For all intents and purposes he grew up in a working class neighborhood which had a distinct eastern North Carolina character to it . He attended several different elementary schools, transferring to a middle school and finally a local high school in Portsmouth, from which he graduated in 1968.
Mr. Smith was accepted to Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Virginia. He attended for two years and transferred to Old Dominion University in Norfolk Va. He married at this time to his wife and lost his draft deferment. Forced to join the U.S. Army due to a low draft number of thirty two. While in basic training, at Fort Campbell, Kentucky he volunteered to become an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician (EOD). At the completion of Basic Training he went on to intensive EOD training at Ft. McClellan AL.
This was Phase I training in chemical and Incendiary weapons and their disposal. From Phase I he went to Phase II EOD training at a naval Ordnance base at Indian Head, MD. At the completion of Phases I and II training. He was a qualified EOD Technician with an in depth knowledge of all Non-Nuclear U.S. and foreign ordnance. This included all chemical and biological weapons, projected, thrown, dropped, placed and other explosive ordnance, including missiles, and some knowledge of sea mines. It also included in depth knowledge of incendiaries and Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs).
Now trained in all aspects of the render safe and disposal of all non-nuclear ordnance he was posted to the 63rd Ordnance Detachment (EOD), Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri as an EOD Tech. During this initial assignment he was continuously trained in his craft and its practical applications as a member of the unit and functioned as the junior member (P-2) on active 2 man teams and in larger operational ad hoc groupings, learning and practicing his craft. After three years he left the army and re-enlisted 35 days later wanting to pursue a career in bomb disposal. Posted to an EOD Control Detachment at Fort Dix, NJ for about a year; he went back to The Naval Ordnance training Station, Indian Head, MD for nuclear weapons render safe and disposal training (phase III). Upon completion he was posted to the 7th Ordnance Detachment (EOD), 8th Army, South Korea covering the southern half of the country. During this posting he first became a leader for two man teams. He remained an independent team leader in all future postings.
When he finished his tour in Korea he was posted to Fort Lee, VA where he stayed for about four years. During this time he was trained in Nuclear Emergency Team Operations (NETOPS) at Kirtland Air Force Base, NM. He also was among the first class chosen to be trained in Improvised nuclear weapons render safe and disposal (N-IED). Much of the work at Fort Lee involved recovering, rendering safe and disposing of active Civil War munitions. His area of operations included everything south of Fredericksburg, VA to the North Carolina line and west to include thirteen counties in eastern West Virginia.
He was reposted to the 67th Ord. Det. (EOD) at Fort McNair, Washington D.C. next to the Washington Naval Base. Fort McNair is most famous as the fort which held the Lincoln assassination conspirators and where they were hanged. The building his unit occupied was the military prison where these conspirators were held during trial and prior to their execution on the parade ground within the fort. He was now the Senior EOD Sergeant for the unit (First Sergeant). It was at the time the smallest area of operations of any EOD unit. It was called, “The President’s Bomb Squad.” The unit’s area of operation included all areas within the Interstate 495 beltway, CIA Headquarters, Andrews Air Force Base, Washington National Airport, Walter Reed Hospital and animal test facility, The Pentagon, U.S. Capitol, White House, Blair House, Old and New Executive Office Buildings, Smithsonian Institution and many other critical facilities and structures. He was also the unit’s Acting Commander for a few months.
Mr. Smith was reposted to Ft. Indiantown Gap, PA for his last EOD posting as its unit First Sergeant. When Mr. Smith was selected for promotion to Master Sergeant he terminated his volunteer status here in 1984. He was reclassified to Senior Nuclear Biological and Chemical Noncommissioned Officer (S-NBC-NCO) in the Army Chemical Corp and received his final promotion to Master Sergeant (MSG). He subsequently served as a Platoon Sergeant and then First Sergeant of The 101st Chemical Company (Decontamination). From there Mr. Smith was assigned to be the Chemical Operations Sergeant for 1st Corps Support Command (1st COSCOM), Fort Bragg, NC. He was also the 1st COSCOM Reserve Components noncommissioned officer in charge (NCOIC), and was involved in 18th Airborne Corps G2/G3 war planning at Ft. Bragg, NC.
From Ft. Bragg he was posted to the 25th Infantry Division (Light)—(25th Inf. Div. (L)) as the Division, NBC NCOIC. In this capacity he participated in various war games with Japan, China and other allies. Finding himself the sole NBC representative for the Division Chemical Section on several occasions. He also compiled, authored and edited/published a quarterly divisional NBC newsletter for four years. He inspected and trained divisional units and was manager for a defensive chemical equipment property warehouse containing thousands of different items valued at millions of dollars.
His last posting was as a full time active army support to the Guard and army reserves in Chicago, IL. He worked there as NBC NCOIC for a U.S. Army Chemical decontamination/smoke Battalion U.S. Army Reserves (USAR) in the capacity of operations, training, and Intelligence for the battalion. Mr. Smith retired from this last posting in Chicago, IL in 1991.
Carlton completed his BS in Science from Regents College of The University of New York-Albany in 1992 with a combined total of over two hundred fifty credit hours. Then attended Liberty University to earn a MA in Professional Counseling, having completed both a short and long internship in all facets of counseling specializing in Substance Disorders and dual diagnosis cases.
He has, since graduation in 1997, worked in a County mental health center, managed an inpatient treatment facility, and counseled at a youth prison. He left this job to babysit for his nine month old grandson for six years. “The best job ever.” He further continues to counsel and advise in his community on a pro-bono basis.
Medically he has several chronic diseases, which are all treatable and in remission, and has been recovered from addiction to alcohol, for 27 years and tobacco, caffeine, and starch cravings for twenty years.
This biography continues to be written each day as he lives . . . by G-d’s hand.
P.S. “Oh”, he says he nearly forgot His first great love was for the G-d of his understanding.