John Daniel Kurtz Smoot Jr., 87, a partner in the law firm of Green, Trueax, Smoot and Collins of Arlington, died of pneumonia July 27 at Inova Alexandria Hospital. Mr. Smoot, who was active in civic affairs, was a resident of Alexandria.
Mr. Smoot was born in Washington and grew up in McLean, graduating from what is now Franklin Sherman High School in 1934. At age 16, he went to Spartanburg Junior College in South Carolina (now Spartanburg Methodist College) for three years and then attended George Washington University. In his senior year, he switched to GWU's law school, but he left college to work full time when his father died.
He clerked at Washington Loan and Trust from 1938 to 1942. During World War II, he served in the Army in the Coast Artillery Corps, rising from private to captain. He was stationed in the Philippines and in Japan as part of the occupation force in an anti-aircraft unit. He was responsible for training troops to shoot down enemy planes.
From 1947 to 1952, Mr. Smoot worked with the Government Employees Insurance Co. as a claims manager and examiner. He took the Virginia bar, passed it and began practicing law in 1952.
Mr. Smoot, who was known as Jack, was active in community service and served on numerous boards in Northern Virginia. From 1955 to 1958, he was chairman of the Northern Virginia Health and Hospital Commission and played a key role in the design and construction of Fairfax Hospital. From 1965 to 1974, he served on the hospital's board of trustees and as treasurer. He served on the board and as trustee or director of Salona Village Inc. in McLean.
He was on the Fairfax County School Board from 1962 to 1964, bringing his experience in construction and development matters, and he served on the committee to build Goodwin House, a retirement and assisted living facility in Alexandria. He was later appointed to its board of trustees by the Episcopal bishop of the Diocese of Virginia.
In the 1970s, Mr. Smoot served on the board of directors of Blue Cross Blue Shield and dealt with matters regarding the rising cost of health care and reimbursements.
While international president of Round Table International, a service organization, he guided the group's expansion into Central and South America and helped establish chapters in Northern Europe. He also was a member of the Arlington Knights of the Round Table. He was honored for his service to the community as Arlington Man of the Year in 1964.
A fifth-generation member of St. John's Episcopal Church in McLean, Mr. Smoot served on the vestry and was a senior warden, among other roles. Years ago, he had responsibility for moving the parish from downtown McLean to its current location on Georgetown Pike. He also was a member of the Potomac Strategy Committee in the Episcopal Church.
Mr. Smoot enjoyed playing golf and tennis.
Survivors include his wife of 61 years, Wilma Jean Smoot of Alexandria; four children, John D.K. Smoot III of McLean, Jean Calder Smoot Reardon of Newton, Mass., Rebecca Brawner Smoot of Hamilton and Robert Tyler Smoot of Great Falls; a brother, Henry B. Smoot of McLean; and eight grandchildren.