Edward A. Smith, a graduate of Clemson A & M College, Clemson, SC, volunteered for active duty in the USAF in June 1951 and was assigned to MATS, Brookley AFB, Mobile, AL. He applied for pilot training and was accepted for training as a Student Officer in Class 52-G, reporting to Spence AFB, Moultrie, Ga. in October 1951. He completed his training at Spence and was transferred to Webb AFB, Big Springs, TX where he completed his pilot training and received his wings on 25th October 1952.
He went through additional combat crew training and was assigned to the 5th Air Force, 4th Fighter Interceptor Wing, 336th Sq , Able Flight, at Kimpo AFB, Korea in March 1953. He flew some 20 plus combat missions as an F-86 pilot and was awarded an Air Medal during his tour. He returned to the States in March 1954 and was assigned as a 1st Lt. to the Tactical Air Command, 9th Air Force, 366th Fighter Bomber Wing, 401st Fighter Bomber Group, 612th Fighter Bomber Squadron at England AFB, Alexandria, LA. He was married to the former Betty Turner of Spartanburg, S.C. in April 1954 and was later killed on 6 August 1954 while flying a F-86F during NightHawk Operations.