Harmon Funeral Home


James J Smith

March 4, 1941June 28, 2020

James J. Smith, whose zest for life, kind spirit and warm heart served as an inspiration to many, died Sunday in Carmel Richmond Health Care & Rehabilitation Center, where he was making strides on his journey to recovery from the coronavirus. He was 79. Known simply as “Jim,” the exemplary community leader often dubbed “The Mayor of Staten Island” and the “Father of Gay Pride,” was known for his passion to enhance local causes, from the Knights of Columbus to the Miss Staten Island Pageant to counseling the drug-and alcohol-addicted.

A Celebration of James' life will be held at a safer date. In Lieu of flowers, donations to in Jim's memory would be greatly appreciated.


  • Funeral Service

    Tuesday, July 7, 2020


James J Smith

have a memory or condolence to add?

tom smith

July 1, 2021


Tommy Smith

August 4, 2020

This quote says everything about Jimmy:
“ A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.”
What an important life my big brother Jimmy led!

Barbara Weeks

July 6, 2020

So many memories of Jimmy.So hard to say good-by.such a kind, loving, and generous man.I feel blessed that he was a presence through out my life.His light shone brightly in this world and will live on in the hearts of those whose lives he touched.My sincere condolences to his family.After a life well lived may he rest in peace

Dorothy (Hermann) Fiore

July 5, 2020

My deepest sympathy to his family, I went to Curtis H.S. with him and I remember him as a good friend, and a really nice person.

Vita O'Donovan

July 5, 2020

To the Smith Family,
May the wonderful memories you have of Jim be a comfort to you at this difficult time.
Vita O'Donovan

Vita O'Donovan

July 5, 2020

Rest in peace, dear friend.



James J Smith was born on March 4, 1941 to the proud parents Margaret Meehan Smith and James Fredman Smith. Jim was the eldest of 9 siblings. Margaret Smith Whiseide ( Jackson Twp. NJ) Mary Elizabeth (Honolulu,Hawaii) William (Bill) John, Robert (Bobby) Peter, Thomas Arthur (Sarasota, Fla) Raymond (Palm City Fla.) John Frances (Jack) Tottenville SI). Richard Joseph, (Union Beach) Edward George Eddie ( West Brighten) He spent most of his formative years living in West Brighton, at 35 Lawrence Ave before establishing residence in St. George on St. Mark’s Place. Living this close to the ferry, was ideal for him. Jim was very fond of Broadway and would often hop on the ferry to see a show. He loved the excitement of always being on the go,which he found in the city.

Jim was a pillar of his community. He was A Past Grand Knight of the Knights of Columbus, a founding member of the Pride Center of Staten Island, He was Grand Marshal of the first Staten Island Pride PArade, An Executive Director of the Miss. Staten Island for many years. He has been the judge of Miss Senior America Pageant for the last five years. He has judged many pageants for the Miss America Organization. One of his proudest accomplishments was the construction of the Vietnam Memorial housed at the Staten Island Armory on Manor road. Honoring the Staten Islanders who lost their lives in Vietnam, Giving the Gold Star Mother’s a Place to mourn. Jim was a former member of the coast guard and a Sandy Hook Pilot Apprentice. He had a varied career, at the Arthur Kill Prison, Dr. Hospital of Staten Island, Bayley Seton Hospital, OASAS at South Beach Psych. He was a very compassionate natural born Addictions Counselor.

Jimmy was a special man. He touched the lives of so many. To know Jim was to love him. He had a large family of origin, but even a larger circle of close personal friends. His Best Friend was Mary O'Keefe, there were many a day he’d leave his toupe on her kitchen table and be found floating, catching some sun in her pool. Jimmy had no children of his own, however he had a special relationship with his nieces and nephews, He was so very proud of them, Alex( Bobbi Jo, Whiteside, Brick NJ), Karen( John) Fox of Jackson NJ, Julie ( Joe) Koslowski of Jackson, NJ & Peggy Whiteside Joseph (Beachwood, NJ), Patrick (Liz) Smith, Annandale VA. Megan (Sayan) Ray, North Salem NY, Brendan Smith (San Jose CA.) Christopher (Lisa) Smith St. Peter’s Berg, Fla., Casey (Sam) Smith ( Tampa, Fla.) Kelsey (John) Fontana, Tottenville SI, Sean (Shannon) Smith (Hazlet NJ) Laura Smith (Belford NJ). He was most especially Proud to be a Great Uncle to Alex ( Maria) Whiteside, Cody Whiteside, Nick (Kyle) Whiteside, Erin & Ian Fox, Joseph Koslowski, Shannon & Lauren Smith, Shailey & Kieran Ray, Jake and Evie Smith, Madison and Riley Fontana, A Great Grand Uncle to Jaxon Whiteside.

There were many waiting for him at the pearly gates. His Mother Marge and Father Jim, Brothers, Eddie, Bobby, Billy & Richie. I’m Sure they welcomed him with open arms. He is Survived by Peggy Whiteside, Jack (Susan) Smith, Tommy (Carol) Smith, Raymond Smith , Connie Smith and Mary Smith, and all his nieces and Nephews. His Niece Julie is quoted “My Uncle was more of a father to me and Grandfather, to my son Joseph. There is a piece of my heart that will never be replaced. He truly was my Uncle Unique.”