"Arizona Smith" served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II as a navigator and nose gunner in B‑17s. He was shot down twice. He was awarded the Silver Star for gallantry in action, a Presidential Citation, the Purple Heart and the Air Medal. He also flew during the Korean War as a navigator in an air transport group.
Arizona was survived by his son, William Smith Jr.; daughters, Edie Underwood and Denise Sharp; 11 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren. Also surviving were his sisters, Helen Preston and Mary Beth Hill. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.