Hearts Love 33

James (Jim) M. Smith

August 31, 1932 ~ June 8, 2022 (age 89)


James (Jim) Michael Smith, 89, of Mahwah, NJ, passed peacefully of natural causes from this life into the welcoming arms of our Lord, surrounded by his loving family on June 8, 2022. 

He was born in Manhattan on August 31, 1932. He was one of four children and the only son of Mary and James M. Smith, Sr.

An avid sports fan, Jim played baseball and ran track at St. Agnes High School. After graduating, he went on to earn a BA in Business from Manhattan College at night while beginning his 50 year career with General Motors.  Jim was drafted into the Army during the Korean War in 1953 and was honorably discharged in 1955. 

Jim worked in several capacities of increasing responsibility for GM, eventually realizing his dream of opening his own dealership in Chestnut Ridge, NY, named Jim Smith Chevrolet.  He then opened a second store in Walden, NY. A successful businessman by any measure, he served as President of the Tri-State Chevrolet Dealer Group, was a member of the General Motors President’s Council and the Knights of Columbus and sat on the boards of Long Island University and Bank of New York.  

Jim was a devoutly faithful Catholic whose kindness and philanthropic endeavors knew no bounds. He was instrumental in building a new Church at St. Elizabeth in Wyckoff, NJ, and supported Camp Venture in Rockland County, NY. He was a benefactor of various Catholic educational institutions as demonstrated by his generosity to St. Elizabeth as well as Don Bosco Prep in Ramsey, NJ, Immaculate Heart Academy in Washington Township, NJ, and St. Joseph Regional in Montvale, NJ. Jim’s wisdom and compassion were instrumental in helping innumerable people with whom he came into contact through their times of difficulty.  

A voracious reader of newspapers, Jim was equally adept at discussing sports and politics. His favorite drink, appropriately, was a Manhattan, he was enamored with Frank Sinatra, and he was a passionate, knowledgeable Giants, Yankees, Rangers, Knicks and Notre Dame fan. 

Jim was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Eleanor Smith.

Jim is survived by his loving wife of (63) years, Elizabeth, his seven children, Jim (and Sue) Smith of Warwick, NY, Dennis (and Sheila) Smith of Walden, NY, Ellen (and Mike) Mahoney of Mahwah, NJ, Betty Ann Dobson of Westwood, NJ, Chris Smith (and Carol) of Warwick, NY, Kerrie (and Brian) Brennan of Oradell, NJ, and Mariann (and Steve) Odierno of Stony Point, NY. He is also survived by his nineteen grandchildren, Jimmy (and Kate) Smith, Ryan (and Shelby) Smith, Kyle Smith, Michael Mahoney, Meghan Mahoney, Conor Mahoney, Maggie Dobson, Erin Dobson, Kaitlyn Dobson, Christopher Smith, Mary Kate Smith, Colleen Smith, Daniel Smith, Elizabeth Smith, Brian Brennan, Daniel Brennan, Quinn Brennan, Steven Odierno, and Katherine Odierno. Jim is also survived by his great-granddaughter, Mackenna Smith as well as his sisters, Marlyn Flynn and Margaret (and William) Malloy.  

A wake will be held on Saturday, June 11, from 2pm - 6pm at Vander Plaat Funeral Home, www.vpfh.com, 257 Godwin Avenue, Wyckoff, NJ. A Funeral Mass will take place on Monday, June 13, at 11am at St. Elizabeth RC Church, 700 Wyckoff Avenue, Wyckoff, NJ. In lieu of flowers, scholarships will be established at Don Bosco Prep, Immaculate Heart Academy, and St. Joseph Regional High School.



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June 11, 2022

2:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Vander Plaat Funeral Home
257 Godwin Ave.
Wyckoff, NJ 07481

Funeral Mass
June 13, 2022

11:00 AM
St. Elizabeth RC Church (Wyckoff Avenue)


Don Bosco Prep
492 N. Franklin Turnpike, Ramsey NJ 07446
Web: http://www.donboscoprep.org

Saint Joseph Regional High School
40 Chestnut Ridge Road, Montvale NJ 07645
Web: http://www.sjrnj.com

Immaculate Heart Academy
500 Van Emburgh Avenue, Township of Washington NJ 07676
Web: http://www.ihanj.com

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