Adlai Hale Smith

September 28, 1957 ~ October 30, 2020 (age 63)


Adlai Hale Smith, 63, of Escondido, California, passed away surrounded by enormous love at his home on October 30, 2020.  His soulmate-wife was by his side. He endured almost 3 years of successful yet insurmountable cancer treatments. Adlai was born in San Francisco on September 28, 1957 and raised there.

He is survived by his wife of 30 years, Catherine Marie Kachurka-Smith, whom he met at work in beautiful Santa Barbara in 1989. He is also survived by his father, the former San Francisco District Attorney Arlo Eugene Smith (Jane Howell) of Columbia, California. His two brothers Arlo Hale Smith, and Averell “Ace” Hale Smith (Laura Talmus), his sister Alexa Lee Smith, all residing in the San Francisco Bay Area.   He had many wonderful nieces and nephews plus grand nieces and grand nephews throughout the country. 

Upon receiving his doctorate degree in physics at UC Berkeley in 1985, he began his career at Mission Research of Santa Barbara. In 1990 he moved to San Diego as the Chief Scientist for Litel Instruments since its founding. As the firm transitioned into Innoven Energy of Colorado Springs, he continued working for them from his California home.  Adlai was a brilliant inventor who was awarded dozens of patents for groundbreaking innovations ranging from microchip manufacturing to GPS range navigation to energy.

Adlai loved The Three Stooges, and Curly and Shemp were his favorites. He had a passion for visiting wineries and enjoyed any and all factory tours. He enjoyed baking homemade bread and pizza. He loved the culture and food and everything about Italy.  He loved a finely-made triple espresso. 

Adlai found satisfying diversions from doing “high faluten math” with physical tasks, such as tending to the acreage of his home. These included gate, fence, and bridge building, drainage trenching, and numerous masonry endeavors.  He planted drought tolerant plants, and removed others with respect to wildfires.

Adlai has chosen as his charity,, an organization created in honor of his beloved late niece Lili, which deals with teen social isolation. 

He was predeceased in life by his mother, Helen Lee Hale Smith in 1997, and his niece Lili Rachel Smith in 2009.

In due time there will be a private outdoor life celebration and you can be sure Moe will ask everyone to “Spread Out."

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