Nashua, N.H., resident James Stephen Smith, 95, died in a tranquil loving environment on March 10, 2022 at his home surrounded by his beloved family.
James (Jim) was born on March 2, 1927 in Boston Massachusetts to Joseph and Elizabeth Smith. His father was a stockbroker/trader, and his mom a traditional homemaker. He was raised to live a good happy life in Boston (Brighton) with his older brother John who was his dearest and best friend. Together, they had may wonderful adventures such as skating on the Charles River, playing baseball, and sneaking into Sullivan Square with their local best buddies. The Smiths were raised to love, cherish, respect, and serve their nation. When World War II came about, both brothers felt the passionate responsibility to enlist and serve their country. John his brother graduated early from Boston Latin, enlisting into the Navy serving bravely at sea. He became one of the youngest Ensigns at that time. Inspired by his brother, James enlisted joining the Army where he went overseas to Germany protecting citizens and Allied interests.
Shortly after his deployment into Europe, James learned the crushing news his best friend’s (John) ship was sunk by an enemy vessel torpedoing his ship towards the end of the war. Soon thereafter, his father Joseph passed prompting James return home from the war physically unscathed yet deeply saddened.
James chose to start a new chapter and begin life anew as a post WWII citizen. Helping his widowed mother, he settled into his young adult life back in Boston. He tried different vocations while enjoying the great outdoors on the weekend. For several years he worked as a shipbuilder, and then decided to focus his talents into sales of different products and sales. James was a charismatic conversationalist with a genuine commitment to customer happiness. Sales proved to be his natural vocation for several decades to come!
Avocationally, he explored the great outdoors taking the train up from Boston to go skiing in the winter, and then renting a house on the Cape with his numerous life-long friends for the summer. In the late 1950s, while working in Boston he met a lovely young lady name Eleanor Conlon at a dancing event. Time went on, they got to know each other and the rest was history. Getting married in 1960, they built a life together, and exactly two years later they had a baby boy (John) whom they named after James’ beloved brother. The young family moved from Boston to Chelmsford, MA where they lived a quiet, comfortable, and happy life. In 1978 James’ first wife Eleanor suddenly passed away leaving her family behind with happy memories, humor, and mindset of hope for a positive future ahead. James was the very definition of positivity and happy new tomorrow. That would serve his family well then, and in all the days ahead.
As fate would have it, James had the good fortune of meeting a wonderful lady some three years later. Her name was Denise Cooper. She and James quickly hit it off and decided to build a new life together for forty years. Denise was the proud mother from her previous marriage that brought forth four children: Elise, John, William and Christine. A few years into their relationship James and Denise settled in Nashua where James eventually changed his vocation once again to become a bronze artisan specialist at the Bronze Craft Corporation where he worked for seventeen years alongside his spouse Denise. Together James, Denise and their combined adult children, became a blended family forming many happy and fun-filled memories to share then, now, and in the future.
James was a fan of anything nautical including wooden boats/ships, the ocean, ocean side cities/locations, and of course seafood! James had a passion for travel although he didn’t like flying too much. He enjoyed being in different locations and seeing the sights, sounds and energy of wherever he was at. Whenever he heard the tremendous music of his era, James was a master in “cutting the rug”, usually surpassing the energy and skills of all others on the dance floor. He lived his whole life “in the moment” always preferred sharing those moments with his family and friends by his side. Those having the privilege of knowing James knew he was a man of good cheer and a pleasure to be in his company. He cherished the company of others and having good conversation with all.
James is survived by his loving wife Denise Cooper-Smith, and his devoted son John (Jack) Smith; his daughter-in-law Mary Magauran-Smith; his grandchildren Charles and Muriel Smith. He is also survived by his beloved step-children, Elise Cooper; John Cooper, and his wife Lisa and ex-wife Diane; William Cooper, and Christine Paradise (Cooper), and her husband Peter. He is further survived by his adored step-grandchildren, Tabitha Jason-Grimes (Paradise) and her wife Misty; Joshua Paradise and his wife Aimee, Jonathan Paradise, John Cooper and his wife Abby, Nathan Cooper and his wife Rebekah, and Emily Rudoshko (Cooper) and her husband Robert; as well as his step-greatgrandchildren, Cooper, Kody, Arianna, Ceceila, Lucia, April, Archibald, and Maclean. He also leaves behind his loyal nephews from his first marriage, James Roberts, Brad Roberts, Tharpa Roberts and their family members.
James was a loving father to his son and his family, his step children, and to their children and children’s children. He was Papa to all, and will be profoundly missed.
Relatives and friends are invited to James’ visitation on TUESDAY, March 15th from 4 until 7 PM at ROCHETTE FUNERAL HOME AND CREMATION SERVICES, 21 Kinsley Street, Nashua. His Funeral Mass will take place on WEDNESDAY, March 16th at 10 AM in St. Louis de Gonzague Church, 48 W. Hollis Street, Nashua. Interment to follow in Edgewood Cemetery, Nashua. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in James’ name to US Veterans Affairs Department- Manchester Regional Office. To leave an online condolence, story, or message please visit www.ANCTIL-ROCHETTE.com