Funeral Services Held Sept. 7 For Dr. Richard D. “Dr. Doug” Smith

Richard Douglas “Dr. Doug” Smith, M.D., age 67, beloved doctor, farmer, visionary, teacher, leader, dad, grandpa, husband, and friend, passed away September 4, 2018, following an extended and valiant fight with cancer.

Dr. Smith was born July 20, 1951 in Fentress County and grew up working on the family farm.  His love for hard work, along with his family’s belief in higher education, led him to his career in medicine.  It wasn’t only a career in medicine, but a love for medicine and helping others, and  he dedicated his life to his career and helping others.

After graduating from the University of Tennessee School of Medicine, he came back to Jamestown and began his practice at the young age of 29.  That was the beginning of an amazing journey that became his life’s work, and he loved every minute of it, through which he was able to help many, many people both directly and indirectly.

He was a true visionary in the field of medicine and always wanted to be on the cutting edge.  His education never stopped.  He never read stories for entertainment.  He was always reading to know more about ways of diagnosing and treating his patients.

It wasn’t until after 25 years of practicing medicine that he decided to become Board Certified.  Of course, he passed and became ABIM Certified.  Very few people can do that 25 years after graduating, but Doug, with his strong will and determination, accomplished that with a breeze and then re-certified 10 years later.

Dr. Doug’s hard work and dedication was apparent not only in the medical field, but also in the field of agriculture.  Growing up on a farm, he learned from the beginning that hard work always paid off, if nothing else in satisfaction.

He and his wife Gaye purchased their first tract of land in 1991 of what is now known as “Sunset Ridge Cattle Co.,” which is known for raising the absolute best Angus cattle around.

Doug’s drive and determination shows once again in the best genetics he could find.  He really took pride in his land and his cattle.  The slogan for Sunset Ridge is “Where the Brand Matters.”  Those closest to him know the details of that slogan and how much those words meant to him.  Once again, cutting edge genetics in his farming practices were a must for him.

Even though he spent countless hours at the hospital and office, he still took time for his family, what he cared so much for.  While family functions many times had to be postponed for hours waiting for his arrival, when he arrived, the party was on.  There was never talk of patients or work, or any of the such once he got home, and he never complained of being tired.

Read the rest of the story in this weeks Fentress Courier.