I asked James Stephen and Raymond Bernardez to accompany me to the home of Bill Smith. Bill had reluc¬tantly agreed to be interviewed for the newsletter, and I knew that by taking two of his 'buddies'; he would open up easier to me.

Sergeant William 'Bill' Smith (27154) joined the British Honduras Volunteer Guard at the age of 17 years in 1946. He served continuously until 1953 when he went to study in Guatemala. On his return he continued to serve under Colonel Fairweather until he left for the United States of America in 1963. Bill was the Platoon Sergeant for No.1 Platoon, A Company under LT. James Locke, former District Officer. His fellow SNCO's at the time included Sergeant Gilroy Lewis, Sergeant Sonny Everett and Company Sergeant Major Demby Bennett.


I received foreign training from the Gloucester and Inniskilling regiments during my time" he said with that big hearty smile of his. Bill recalls that he always tried to improve himself by copying the good things he picked up from others, injecting his own ideas when applicable. As friendly as he was, he was very firm when it came to be on parade and Baizy Smith would have attested to that! He has fond memories of James Locke Sr., who took him as a son, coached him in table tennis, and allowed him to play with the Officers.

"Age did not mean anything if you could conduct yourself" he said. Greta, his wife of 57 years of marriage, was an active participant throughout our visit, feeding us, keeping our glasses filled with ice, and showing us all those pictures of their son and grandchildren. "He could be a pain in the neck, but he is a wonderful person!" She has always been steadfast in her support of him. Fond memories include the Blue November Ball at the Militia Hall, dancing away with Bill swinging on his toes and his head up in the air!. His Doctor says that he has high blood pressure but he says we brought it on him.

At the end of the evening we toured his basement at Park Place. Many functions were held here after the league was formed. The idea originated at an occasion hosting Colonel DNA Fairweather and KB Smith, which took place at 71 Maplewood Avenue in Hempstead, home of James Stephen. The following week the founding members met at Bill's Park Place address and the rest is history.

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The Belize Ex-Servicemen’s League of New York Inc.

is proud to honor Mr. William 'Bill' Smith
founding member and former President of the league
in Vol: 2  issue's

PROFILE. April 2010
Sergeant William 'Bill' Smith
Belize Ex-Servicemen's League of New York Inc.
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