Nature 18

Dr. Francis Joel Smith, PhD

April 25, 1975
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Dr. Francis Smith, PhD Obituary




Dr. Francis Joel Smith, PhD, 48, of Lakewood, Colorado, died Wednesday, October 25, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Francis was born April 25, 1975 in Bloomington, Indiana. Francis was a research scientist (PhD) in craniofacial embryology; public outreach and advocacy for craniofacial anomalies awareness and had worked at the University of Colorado Denver, Anschutz Medical Campus, School of Dental Medicine and the department of Craniofacial Biology, Aurora, Colorado. Francis was a 1994 graduate of Canterbury High School, Fort Wayne, Indiana University-Purdue University, Fort Wayne with a BS in Biology in 1998 and a MS of Biology in 2001, King’s College London with a BSc Biomedical Science Craniofacial Sciences 2007, University of California San Francisco, PhD Oral & Craniofacial Sciences 2012. Postdoctoral fellowships, University of Calgary, craniofacial 3D imaging/morphometrics 2012-2015 and the University of Colorado Denver, craniofacial genetics & craniofacial public engagement 2015-2023. Francis was a classical pianist, violinist, artist and enjoyed Star Trek, architecture, aviation, traveling, reading, history and collecting medical antiques. He is survived by brothers, Thaddeus J. (Connie) Smith, of Albion, Robert W. Smith, of Angola, Raymond W. Smith, of Auburn,  and James M. (Gail) Smith, of Montpelier, Ohio; sisters, Mary P. (Jim) Wolf, of Columbia City; Ruth D. (Jonathan) Ingram, of Fort Wayne and Megan E. (Doffrey) Billingsley, of Fort Wayne; He was preceded in death by his father, Robert E. Smith; Mother, Betty J. Smith; brothers, Andrew J. Smith, Peter Smith and Joseph Smith; sister, Joselyn E. Badman.

Visitation will be held on Monday, Nov., 13, 2023, from 5:00-7:30 p.m., at Pinnington Funeral & Cremation Services, 502 N. Main St., Auburn.

A funeral service for Francis will be held at 5:00 p.m., with visitation one hour prior, on Tuesday, Nov., 14, 2023, at Lakewood Park Baptist Church, 5555 C.R. 29, Auburn, Indiana.

A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m., on Wednesday, Nov., 15, 2023, at Christian Union Cemetery, Garrett.

Pastor James Pettit will be officiating.

Memorial donations may be made to Children’s Craniofacial Association 15851 N. Dallas Pkwy Suite 245 Addison, TX 75001 or at or

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November 13, 2023

5:00 PM to 7:30 PM
Pinnington Funeral and Cremation Services (Auburn)

November 14, 2023

4:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Lakewood Park Baptist Church 5555 County Road 29, Auburn

Funeral Service
November 14, 2023

5:00 PM
Lakewood Park Baptist Church 5555 County Road 29, Auburn

Graveside Service
November 15, 2023

11:00 AM
Christian Union Cemetery


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