You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

Family of slain Ohio WWII Navy vet renews reward

Jul. 19, 2014 - 04:10PM   |  
  • Filed Under

CHILLICOTHE, OHIO — The family of a World War II veteran and great-great grandfather killed in his Ohio home nearly three years ago is renewing a $5,000 reward for information that helps solve the cold case, saying that justice is long overdue.

Harry Smith, 89, was fatally hit in the head at his home in Chillicothe in southern Ohio on Oct. 16, 2011, before his killer set the house on fire.

Family spokeswoman Andrea Smith said Saturday that the family is reviving the $5,000 reward, first offered last August for a three-month period, because investigators said it could help solve the case.

She said the patriarch's murder has devastated the family and that they'll do whatever it takes to help.

"You can't grieve somebody who has gone in such a way and justice hasn't been served, and you have to fight for justice to even exist," said Smith, 43, whose husband Gary is Harry Smith's grandson. "We're not going to give up, we're not going to lay down. We're going to fight until what's right is done."

The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation is working on solving the case and believes robbery was the motive in the killing because several items were removed from Harry Smith's home before the fire, including money and jewelry.

In a news release publicizing the killing last year in hopes of garnering attention, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said the WWII veteran deserved respect for serving his country.

"We strongly believe that someone knows who committed this brutal crime, and it is time for that person to come forward and help give this family some peace," he said.

Smith's son, Jerry Smith, said at the time that the murder "has been really hard on the family."

"It is something that never really leaves your mind," he said. "It is with you like your breath is. It is a constant thing."

Harry Smith, a native of Chillicothe, served in the Navy during WWII and was a Walmart greeter in his later years.

He's survived by two children, five grandchildren, nine great-grandchildren and three great-great grandchildren. His longtime wife, Opal, died the April before his killing.

Answers by RallyPoint

Join trending discussions in the military's #1 professional community. See what members like yourself have to say from across the DoD.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.

This Week's Navy Times

This Week's Navy Times

Go mustang
LDO and warrant careers offer more authority, a pay hike and big retirement payout

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook