OBITUARY: Robert Clay Smith-Adams


Robert Clay Smith-Adams passed away in Nashville, TN on January 27th, 2024, at the age of 51.

He was born on April 21, 1972, in Santa Maria, CA to Cecelia F Smith (Brannam) and Samuel L Smith.

Robert attended Lompoc High School, graduating in 1990. He began working at Williams Brothers until he reached the age requirement to attend the police academy at Allen Hancock College. He proudly served the LAPD and South Gate Department as a police officer until 1997.

Robert later worked in Orange County, CA with Marshall Pools, where he and owner Hugh designed and installed luxury pools and water feature equipment throughout Southern California. He obtained his real estate license in 2005 and became a successful REO broker. He coached real estate agents across the country as a Platinum Coach with Craig Proctor Seminars and served as a Master Broker for the National REO Broker’s Association, receiving numerous awards for his exemplary service. Robert was also a real estate broker in Tennessee.

Robert married Angela Katherine Adams on July 8th, 2017, and they welcomed their daughter Grace Katherine Adams on May 27th, 2021. He adored his family, sharing pictures and fond memories with anyone he met, even strangers.

Robert enjoyed flying small craft Diamond or Cirrus airplanes, attending music concerts, and traveling with his wife and family in his free time. His favorite spot was Fort Morgan Beach, Alabama, where he walked his dogs on the beach and watched the Blue Angels’ aerial displays.

Robert was diagnosed with stage IV appendix cancer in 2021. He underwent aggressive chemotherapy followed by radical HIPEC surgery which involved the partial removal of nine organs. After surgery, he returned to his passion for police work and served as a police officer for the Mt. Juliet Police Department briefly until his cancer returned and prevented daily activity.

Robert lived for 14 months with a malignant small bowel obstruction, which doctors deemed miraculous. During this time, Robert witnessed countless miracles with the laying of hands, recovering from multiple organ failures several times until he passed peacefully on January 27th, 2024.

Robert’s unwavering strength and devotion to his family earned him the moniker of a true warrior. He fought cancer with incredible courage, which inspired many who followed his heartfelt documentary on Facebook. His display of faith captured the hearts of countless people, who found inspiration in his journey to follow or recommit their lives to Jesus Christ.

Robert had a gift for making everyone feel valued. Even people he had only known for a short time felt like they had known him for years. He had a quick wit and intelligence, with a comeback for almost anything. Robert genuinely cared for and loved many people, displaying a true servant’s heart. He desired to help strangers, support his friends, and receive acceptance and unconditional love from those closest to him.

Robert was preceded in death by his adoptive father, grandparents, and best friend Mike Scherer.

He is survived by his beloved wife Angela, two-year-old daughter Gracie, adoptive mother Cecilia, biological mother Linda Bonaccorso (McKeague), aunts, uncles, and three adult children from a prior marriage.

Robert’s friends and loved ones will forever cherish his memory. His incredible love for his family defied the odds as he pushed past countless medical prognoses to spend more time with them. Robert’s story of tremendous courage and belief in God will continue to inspire and save many souls.

The Funeral Service will be held on Saturday, February 3, 2024 at 2:00 pm at Sellars Funeral Home at Mt. Juliet with Minister James Thayer officiating. The Visitation will be held on Saturday, February 3, 2024 from 10:00 am until service time at 2:00 pm at Sellars Funeral Home at Mt. Juliet.

Robert loved Jesus with all his heart and is now resting in the arms of his Lord and Savior.

We invite you all to share pictures or memories of Robert. It was his wish that we laugh, reminisce, and smile together during this time.


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