Noel Smith ’03, 1980-2010
By James Gooch ’03
“I announce the great individual, fluid as Nature, chaste, affectionate, compassionate, fully armed; I announce a life that shall be copious, vehement, spiritual, bold, And I announce an end that shall lightly and joyfully meet its translation.” —Walt Whitman
On October 10, 2010, Noel Christian Smith departed this world in the loving company of family, friends, and a most radiant sunset over the Ozark Mountains. It was beautifully poetic. Noel had spent 30 years shining his adventurous spirit, witty humor, and unwavering love on the rest of us. Even during his two-year fight with brain cancer, he entertained and humored us till his very last days. This was Noel’s spirit, an unwavering testament to life and love.
Noel was an essential member of our Rollins community—an actor at the Annie Russell and Fred Stone Theatres, a brother of Tau Kappa Epsilon, field researcher in Peru and Costa Rica, an intern for a semester in London, a prestigious scholar who twice received the Morris K. Udall Scholarship, and a graduate with honors in 2003 with a major in environmental studies and minor in sustainable development and the environment.
After Rollins, Noel continued his upward trajectory, serving as a Congressional aide for his home district of Chattanooga, Tennessee and then as a writer for the American Agricultural Law Association. However, his greatest achievement was his family. He married the love of his life, Hannah Lambiotte Smith, in 2006. Together, they had a most beautiful daughter, Emma Arlene Smith—born just three weeks after Noel’s death. There is no doubt that Emma is destined for greatness.
We all miss Noel immensely, but we can be comforted in the knowledge that his enduring spirit lives on in each of us. In Noel’s own words, “Get ’er done!”