By Betty Gandee
Not ever meeting the man, whose name was engraved there alongside tens of thousands of other fallen soldiers, she knew he meant a great deal to her family, and this was a moment she would never forget.
On that day Greg White had told his granddaughter Lanney Robbins to look for the name, as he was a fallen family member, who like many others, paid the ultimate sacrifice for his country. In that moment White knew something needed to be done in remembrance of Al, as he was called by family and friends. He recruited the help of Smith’s sisters, Shelba Smith and Shella Jarrett, and proceeded to contact the proper chains of government to request Queen Shoals bridge in Clay County, where Allen was born and raised, be renamed the U.S. Army SP4 Wilbur Allen Smith Memorial Bridge.
Wilbur Allen Smith, known throughout his life as “Al,” was born to Wilbur Amos Smith and Mary Eloise Rogers on January 8, 1948, in Madison, West Virginia, and he grew up in Clay County on Camp Creek Hill at Bomont. He attended Clay County schools, graduated from Clay County High School in 1965, and was a member of the National Honor Society. He also attended Glenville State College for two and one-half…