W. McFate (Mack) Smith, M.D., RADM (Ret.)
Mack Smith passed away at home on Feb. 25, 2011, from complications of Lewy Body Disease. He was born in 1926 in Rupert, Idaho, the son of William Hudson Smith and LeVon McFate. His only brother, Phil, preceded him in death.
Mack grew up in Ogden, Utah, and joined the Navy V-12 program upon graduating from high school. He then attended SMU in Dallas for his pre-med, followed by graduation from the University of Chicago Medical School in 1951. Mack transferred from the Navy to the United States Public Health Service upon entering his internship and residency programs at the Staten Island USPHS hospital and Belleview/Columbia University in New York. He transferred to the USPHS hospital in San Francisco in 1962, and in 1969 became CO and Medical Director and established a research program within the PHS system.
His research and academic medicine career spanned more than 50 years. He retired from the USPHS in 1973 after becoming a Region 9 Health Director, Rear Admiral, and Asst. Surgeon General of the United States. Mack also retired from the UC San Francisco, where he spent 20 years as Professor of Medicine, and Director of the Preventive Medicine Residency Program at UC Berkeley's School of Public Health.
Mack became a leading expert in high blood pressure and other cardiovascular risk factor research with his participation and leadership in numerous USPHS and NIH clinical trials. His career also included cardiovascular drug development at Merck & Co., and other research at Stanford Research Institute.
In retirement, Mack proudly served on the board of the Sonoma Valley Hospital for 12 years, and then as a member of the Sonoma Valley Community Health Center board. He was an active tennis player and golfer; an avid wine enthusiast and amateur winemaker, and a 40-year member of the Bohemian Club, in which he participated with great joy.
Mack first married Ruby Carlson, with whom he leaves three children: Greg Smith, of Red Bluff; Marcelyn Smith, of Woodacre; and Michele Molina (Andres), of Kelseyville. He second married, Jacqueline Brunell, and leaves a stepson, Paul Brunell, of San Rafael. In addition to the children, he leaves eight grandchildren, John Watson, Valerie Shaw, Trevor, Travis and Dawnielle King, Andrea Vasquez, Geoffrey and Lauren Brunell. He also leaves three great-grandchildren, Kayden and Breanna King and Abigail Shaw.
The family extends their most heartfelt and loving thanks to his caregivers, Dee, Linda, Rosemary and Maria, and to all the Hospice By The Bay professionals and volunteers who never failed him.
Mack was a true gentleman and scholar, a loyal friend and colleague, a loving husband, father, "Papa" and grandfather. "Now you dwell inside the rhythm of our breath."
Cremation carried out by Duggans Mission Chapel, Sonoma. A Celebration of Life to be announced at a later date. Memorial contributions may be made to the Lewy Body Dementia Assn., www.LBDA.Org., Sonoma Valley Hospital Foundation, or Hospice By The Bay.