In Memory of




Obituary for Howard C. Smillie

Howard C. Smillie, 99 years old, of Acton, Massachusetts, died at home on November 5, 2021.

Howard was born in Somerville, MA, grew up in Arlington, MA and survived scarlet fever and pneumonia before the advent of antibiotics. He graduated from Arlington High School. In 1943, during his first year of college at Northeastern University, he volunteered for military service with the Army along with many of his classmates, and was sent to Fort Lee before being deployed to the Pacific where he served in the quartermaster corps until 1946.

Howard began working in his father’s wholesale candy company known as Jack Smillie, Inc., located in Central Square, Cambridge while a student. He graduated from Northeastern University. Thereafter, he went into the family business and became the President of Jack Smillie, Inc. In 1980, he moved the business to Woburn where he expanded the company to include fancy foods. Howard was active in many organizations including as a director of the National Candy Wholesalers Association, a deacon of the Acton Congregational Church, Gideons, Masons, Stephens Ministry and prison ministry. He also enjoyed hosting the annual neighborhood Easter egg hunt for more than 5 decades.

Howard spent a lot of his free time at his home in Jackson, NH which he first visited upon taking the ski train from Boston. When he was in Jackson he always attended the Glen Baptist Community Church.

Howard was the son of John Allan Smillie and Isabelle (Wills) Smillie. Howard is survived by Anne (Mercer) Smillie, his wife of 65 years. He is also survived by his four children who are Elizabeth DeArmond of Sarasota, FL, Pamela Smillie of Jackson, NH, Martha Smillie and her husband Kurt Yuengling of Jackson, NH, and Allan Smillie of Acton. He has three grandchildren who are Renee Conaway of Nashville, TN, Christopher DeArmond of Dallas, TX and Zachary Yuengling of Jackson, NH.

Due to Covid restrictions, there will be a graveside service for the immediate family and a memorial service celebrating Howard’s life will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers please send any donations to Salvation Army or the charity of your choice.

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