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Kent Warner Smith sponsored obituary

Kent Warner Smith

June 16, 1941 to

February 18, 2008



Kent Warner Smith passed with a quiet look of delight on his face on Monday,

February 18, 2008 at his home in Nevada City. He was 66.




A celebration of Kent’s life will be held Sunday, March 16 at 2 pm at the

Nevada City Veterans Memorial Building, 415 N. Pine St. Nevada City. In

Kent’s spirit, his family invites everyone to dress casually and, if you

like, wear a kooky hat. Bring your dancing shoes, favorite memories, and a

celebratory spirit.

Kent will long be remembered in the Nevada County community for his deep

political and spiritual engagement, as well as his humor, intelligence, his

commitment to justice, and his fun eccentric character.

Kent’s brilliance and vast knowledge of geo-political issues were

remarkable. Coming from a line of scholars, Kent graduated from Stanford in

1964 with a BA in American History. He played for the Stanford Men’s soccer

team and studied abroad in Italy. Kent then went on to earn an MA in History

at the University of California, Berkeley in 1966 followed by a PhD in

Diplomatic History, UC Berkeley 1972, successfully completing a dissertation

on U.S.-Mexican relations.

As a graduate student, Kent was a leading organizer of non-violent

resistance to the Vietnam War and a dedicated activist in the Civil Rights

Movement. He served as the Field Secretary of the War Registers League in

1972 and the Academic Coordinator for the Peace Studies Program at Stanford

in 1974. He also co-authored the U.S. history textbook, As It Happened.

Kent was a devoted father of two daughters, Micaela and Gabrielle, and

lived in Santa Cruz while raising his family with Mardi Van Winkle, his

former wife and co-adventurer. During this time, his creative side started

to emerge and he delved into sculpture, cake decorating, planning family

trips and creating the family game, Torpedoes and Submarines which everyone

loved. He taught History and International Relations at several institutions

of higher education and MBA Marketing and Management in the Silicon Valley.

In the mid-80s, he moved to San Francisco and founded the Dream Training

Institute. He was also executive director of the Association of Dreams.

Dreams served as a meaningful guide for Kent in understanding his life and

its direction.

In 1985, he moved to Nevada County and built his beloved “Walden” cabin in a

spiritual community near Grass Valley. The quietude this provided supported

a deeply spiritual life for 12 years. During this time, he was instrumental

in the formation of the Green Party of California and ran for both the U. S.

and State Senate. He was among the early pioneers in organizing the Green

Party globally, in particular between Canada, Mexico and the U. S. He played

an important role at the first Planetary Meeting of Greens held in Rio de

Janeiro in May 1992 immediately preceding the Earth Summit.

Upon hearing of Kent’s passing, Natalia Escuedero, former vice-president of

the Green Ecological Party of Mexico wrote, “Mission accomplished, Kent! You

served your country, society and mother Earth throughout your life,

demonstrating that you are a man of justice and order. You have left us an

example to follow.”

During the 1990s, he became president of our local FCAT station producing

and hosting several programs such as The Emerging Golden Age, The News Hour

and the Monty Python-like comedy Mid Realities with friend Jerry Martin.

Kent continued his community service until the end of his life organizing

many groups, teaching free classes and mentoring others. One of his last

political efforts was organizing Americans for Constitutional Integrity, a

group dedicated to the preservation of our country’s constitution and the

Impeachment of President Bush.

Kent’s interests were varied and included tennis, soccer, trips to the

family cabin, international adventure (traveling to more than 35 countries)

reading, writing, (he authored the book People Magic: How to Manifest the

Relationships you Want), meditating, art (The Outlaw Artists), walking the

streets of Nevada City, attending cultural events and cultivating and

enjoying the depths of intimacy with his life partner, Lynn.

Kent was a beloved grandfather to his six grandchildren. Affectionately

known as “Grandpa Moustache,” he loved to wrestle and play soccer. He was

famous for his money toss.

In his eight-month journey through illness and healing, Kent remained

positive and loving, relying on an “attitude of gratitude.” He focused on

natural healing and a method he called Healing in Style which meant going

out to restaurants, watching movies and having fun. He used his last time on

Earth well by cultivating love and forgiveness among his loved ones. It was

no surprise that he died with a look of delight on his face.

Kent is survived by his life partner, Lynn Ely; daughter and son-in-law,

Micaela Rubalcava and Jeff Cunan of Quincy, CA; daughter and son-in-law,

Gabrielle Smith-Dluha and Radovan Dluhy-Smith of the Czech Republic; six

grandchildren: Luis, Che and Miles Rubalcava Cunan, Jakub Dluhy-Smith, Theo

Dluhy-Smith and Olivia Dluha; brother and sister-in-law, Dan and Hannah

Smith of Walnut Creek; sister and brother-in-law, Nancy and Mike Anderson of

Grass Valley; sister and brother-in-law, Elaine and John Culverwell of

Fremont; and many nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by parents,

Louise Dally Smith and Ralph J. Smith.

The spirit of Kent W. Smith’s life was to play, to explore, to try new

things, to make an impact, to stand up for justice, to serve truth, and to

search for God. May that spirit live on in all of us.

Memorial contributions can be made to Hospice of the Foothills.


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