William M. Smith
William M. Smith (Baltimore Sun)

William M. Smith, a retired steamship company executive and a sports fan, died Saturday of multiple organ failure at Howard County General Hospital. He was 88.

The son of Martin Smith and Catherine Riley Smith, William Martin Smith was born in Baltimore and raised in Highlandtown.


After graduating in 1944 from McDonogh School, he immediately enlisted in the Navy, where he was trained as a radio and radar operator.

After being discharged in 1946, he went to work in the accounting department of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad before taking a job at Furness Withy Ltd.

Mr. Smith held liaison roles among steamship, stevedoring and shipping firns. He later worked as resident agent for the Patapsco Ship Ceiling and Stevedoring Co. He became a financial and contract manager for Kerr Steamship Co., from which he retired in 1992.

The former Catonsville resident, who lived in Ellicott City, was a world traveler and lifelong sports fan who enjoyed golf, tennis, bowling and softball. He also enjoyed following the Orioles and Ravens.

He was a parishioner of St. Louis Roman Catholic Church in Clarksville.

A Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Roman Catholic Church of the Resurrection, 3175 Paulskirk Road, Ellicott City.

Mr. Smith is survived by his wife of 35 years, the former Margaret Dedeian; two sons, Kenneth W. Smith of Axton, Va., and Mark C. Smith of Bethesda; a daughter, Sallyanne Smith of Arlington, Va.; and six grandchildren. An earlier marriage ended in divorce.