Bo  Smith's Website 

Last Updated: August 27th, 2019


" If you don't like something, change it.
If you can't change it, change your attitude"

" Rough Seas Make Good Sailors"

In my experience, going through challenging situations with a group of fellow participants creates a team.  Oklahoma drills for a football team, boot camp for Marines at Paris Island,  BUDS for Seals,  flight training with the same group of student pilots, survival training, combat operations, or even fraternity hazing are examples.  Our politically correct climate would like us to dial back this type of training or hard practices.  Few who have experienced this experience would agree.  Although the weak or improperly motivated  may fall by the wayside, the team is stronger without them.

"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling
which thinks nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is wiling to fight,
nothing that is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free
unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

John Stuart Mill

Bo's Active Websites

Bo's Mine Tours
(updated July 26th, 2019)

Bo's Past Educational Services Projects Websites

Only the Protein Crystals website is currently available online.
I plan to eventually create webpages within this website describing these projects.

Protein Crystals in Space Website Aerospace Education Mentor Website

Project Geo Website

    Unfortunately, I have had to suspend my mine tours business in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina. Instead, I have begun a hobby involving  selling some of my minerals minerals and designing custom made pendants and rings from my home in Jacksonville.

I will continue working with the contacts I established during my days in Spruce Pine. But, I have also rejoined the Jacksonville Gem and Mineral Society and look forward to the opportunity to take classes in making cabochons and wire wrapping.

Currently, all my minerals and supplies are in my garage in Jacksonville.  I have accomplished a lot of processing in the garage and at the desk shown below. I look forward to moving in to my proper mineral office which this fall and winter.

I have moved some of my rocks from the garage to a simulated mine dump (tailings) in my backyard so that visitors can do some mining.

The rocks (on the right) are western North Carolina  Spruce Pine Pegmatite specimens from the McKinney/Bon Ami Feldspar Mines or from the Sink Hole Mica Mine.

The rocks on the left are mostly fluorescent zinc minerals from the Sterling Hill Mine in Ogdensberg, NJ. I have more zinc minerals in the garage that I will move to the tailings.

Diana joined me in our first wire wrapping class on November 30, 2018 with our instructor Connie Layton from the Jacksonville Gem and Mineral Society.

Connie is also my instructor for cabochon making.

We both plan on improving our skills with each new cabochon or pendant

This is Diana's most recent wire wrapping product (June 2019)

She plans to make additional pendants out of sea agate.

She is far more artistic than I!

This is my first wire wrapping product.

Turquoise from the Dry Creek Mine in Nevada

We both used sterling silver wire to make our pendants.


See more of our jewelry products as we make them on our website B&Ds Jewelry

I have been spending a lot of my time reading this summer and working on my memoir (journal). Some of the reading has been for pleasure such as Nick Petrie's four Peter Ash novels. Some has been non fiction books such as Hugh Ross's "Improbable Planet" and two books by David McCullough; "The Pioneers" and "John Adams".  But, I have also two books about the Vietnam War in 1972; Steven Coont's "Flight of the Intruder" and D.D. Smith's book "Above Average: Naval Aviation the Hard Way". 

Conducting research for my memoir has given me lots of time to reflect on aspects of the war which most of us directly involved in it were too busy trying to accomplish the mission the best we could rather than to trying to effect  the conditions under which the Vietnam War was fought. What could we do about that? It was our job to fly the flight schedule and conduct our missions  professionally.  We could not effect the political aspects of our involvement in the war or understand why our civilian leaders allowed the political restrictions to have a negative effect on those of us were involved in fighting it.

D.D. Smith sums it up pretty well in his book "Above Average: Naval Aviation the Hard Way" on pages 206 and 207"

(I have made additional comments in parentheses)

"By April, 1972, the U.S. began Operation Linebacker I, which called for a significant increase in bombing strikes in the Hanoi and Haiphong areas.  The problem with LInebacker I was that it didn't allow for bombing of targets (of strategic military importance) and in the protected zone in Hanoi itself. When it became obvious that the North Vietnamese leadership wasn't serious about peace- after all, they were ensconced in a bomb free zone in Hanoi- President Nixon launched Linebacker II.  From 18 to 29 December, 1972, 729 B-52 sorties were flown against Hanoi and Haiphong all at night. The Navy provided Iron Hand (anti Surface to Air Missile missions) and mined the harbor and waterways of Haiphong.   The air battle was colossal.

Linebacker II was, in all important respects, the plan submitted to President Johnson by the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1965.  If the plan had been executed then  (instead of the rules of engagement used which restricted the bombing of "Safe zones" around Hanoi and Haiphong, prohibited bombing of airfields and SAM sites under construction, dikes, ships in Haiphong harbor etc.), it is very likely that the war would have ended in much sooner (certainly by 1967).

Of the 58,000 lives lost by the U.S. in Vietnam, could 30,000 have been avoided? It is painful to consider. 

The lesson is one we should not forget: In war, casualties on both sides will be minimized if we strike with massive force with the goal of swift and total victory.       

Diana and I in 2016 at the Little Switzerland Inn, Blue Ridge Mountains, NC Diana and I in 2019 enjoying a little break at Navarre Beach near Pensacola, FL

My wife Diana and I along with our three Shih Tzu doggies (Panda Bear, Bella, and King Tut), our orange tabby cat (Gemini),
 and our American Curl cat, Ruby, live in Jacksonville, Florida. We enjoy visiting with our friends and family who live in the vicinity of Jacksonville. 

I plan to spend most of my time this fall doing the following:

Coordinating a reunion of my first Navy squadron; the Attack Squadron Fifteen Valions.  We are planning the reunion at the Casa Monica Hotel in St. Augistine in November.

Continuing working on my online memoir (journal). I have completed the first draft of the first two chapters; My Childhood and Cornell.  But, they both need revision and editing. I have completed the next three chapters: Flight Training, VA-15 1966 (First Vietnam Cruise), and VSA-15 1967 (Second Vietnam Cruise).  I am currently working on the next chapter; USAF Exchange Tour (F-105 Thunderchief)

I  recently accepted the position of President of the Cornell Club of Greater Jacksonville. This should keep me busy in addition being Chairperson of the Cornell Alumni Admissions Ambassador Network (CAAAN) which conducts alumni contacts with applicants to Cornell in northeast Florida and participates in college fairs.

I have also initiated a new project; to find funding and select students for a one week STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) summer camp  at the National Flight Academy in Pensacola, Florida in July 2020.

I also hope to spend more time making cabochons. Diana and I plan to attend the Jacksonville Gem and Mineral Show on September 28th. I plan to purchase some rough material for making cabochons there. We also plan to continue perfecting our skills at wire wrapping with our friend and instructor Connie Layton.

And  finally, with September comes Gator football. I can no longer attend the Gator games due to my limited mobility,. But, I enjoy participating in the Cal Poly Statistics Department's weekly football pool with my daughter Heather and texting with both Heather and Laura during Gator games.

Diana and I enjoy the fellowship of our friends at the New Day JAX church. Diana also enjoys  working on home decorating  and landscaping projects.  We like to go fishing when we can both in Jacksonville or while visiting friends and family outside of town.  We had to sell our cabin in the Blue Ridge Mountains  and will miss spending our summers there.  

We recently celebrated Diana's birthday and our Eleventh Anniversary with a short trip to St. Augustine

We stayed at a quaint Bed and Breakfast called the Old City House Inn and Restaurant.   The building was built around 1857 as a carriage house for a mansion that has since burned down. It is located at 115 Cordova Street behind the Casa Monica Hotel and next to Flagler's Alcazar Hotel; now the Lightner Museum.

The image is from a post card with a photograph by Addison Fitzgerald
The Old City House is circled with the Casa Monica Hotel on the left
and the Lightner Museum on the right

The Old City House Inn and Restaurant has seven bedrooms , a room with a bar and a small restaurant, and a patio with umbrellas (smoking permitted).

A complimentary wine (or beer) and cheese hour from 5:00-6:00 is part of the room rate!

The restaurant is open to the public for lunch and dinner.  Room guests normally get their choice of table and times for dinner. The food and the service
are outstanding!

The Old City House owner, Juan, cooks a complimentary two course breakfast and his son serves the guests.

The Old City House Inn and Restaurant Website

As I had recently been released from the hospital and had some mobility issues, we requested a first floor room. We were able to park in the Old House parking lot (free), check in to our room, enjoy the wine and cheese, have dinner, go to the patio for after dinner drinks, coffee and a cigar, retire to our room, and enjoy the complimentary breakfast all on one floor!

Our room was the Augustin.  It had a queen four poster bed, antique armoire, jacuzzi tub/shower and plenty of room.

We got a great rate because we stayed on a Thursday night.  Weekend rates are considerable higher.

You can make your reservation and choose your room online. But make sure you follow up by phone with the owner, Juan. In our case, he gave us an upgrade to the Augustin.

As Diana and I had been to St. Augustine several times and also do to my lack of mobility, we decided to not attempt to go to St. George Street or other tourist attractions.  As neither of us had been to the Lightner Museum and the fact that it was right next door to the Old House Inn, we decided to concentrate our "tourist" time there.  We got permission from Juan to leave our car in the parking lot at no charge and go next door to the Lightner Museum for lunch and a tour.

The Lightner Museum

The Lightner Museum was built by Henry Flagler as the Alcazar Hotel in 1888. Today, the building consists of a mall arcade with shops and the museum in the rear. The museum has the finest collection of 19th Century art in the country.
 The entrance fee is $15 ($12 for seniors. There are many incredible exhibits in the museum. This large malachite veneer and gold vase is a replica of one that is displayed at the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersberg, Russia. The Alcazar Hotel was famous for the largest indoor pool in it's time. There is now a cafe at one end of the pool.  You can enter the cafe for lunch either from the museum or from Cordova Street.

The Lightner Museum Website

Our Home and Family

Our Jacksonville home in Egrets Glade

Our three Shih Tzu dogs; King
King Tut (upper left), Panda (front) and Bella.

Our American Curl Ruby,
 and our orange tabby cat,  Gemini.

My Five Daughters

left to right: Laura, Heather, Jessica, Lindsay, Stacy

My eldest daughter Heather is a senior lecturer and statistical consultant at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo. CA. Her husband, David is a senior biostatistician for Weststat in Maryland but works from home.

Their oldest son, Austin (left center) graduated from Cal Berkeley with a a dual physics and computer science major. He recently completed a
one year Computer Science Master's Degree program ((machine learning) at Imperial College London. He is currently enrolled in a PhD program in Machine Learning  at Georgia Tech in Atlanta.
Hadden (right center) will be a senior at  UCLA in the Honors Program. He is a  Math/Economics major with a concentration in computing and a minor in Statistics. He is also the Vice President for Scholarship of the Interfraternity Council.

Steve, Eliza, and Laura
at the Hopewell Rocks
July 2019
My "second" daughter Laura is an experienced television news producer who has her PhD in Journalism from the University of Texas. Laura is the "Hearst Lecturer of Journalism"  for the  College of Journalism at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC.  Her husband, Steve is a musician and private contractor. Their beautiful and talented daughter, Eliza is eleven years  old and is enjoying school in Columbia!

This picture was taken
at the Hopewell Rocks in New Brunswick in northeastern Canada during their current six week summer vacation. The Hopewell Rocks are eroded sedimentary conglomerate and sandstone rock outcrops in the upper reaches of the Bay of Fundy at Hopewell Cape.

They are currently in Nova Scotia visiting Halifax and Oak Island, yes Oak Island!  Their next stops are Montreal and Toronto before returning to Columbia for school and work.

August 2019

My middle daughter, Stacy is the Director of Instructional Support Services at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC. Her group helps professors use instructional technology. Her husband, Jed, is a Media Strategist at Myriad Media, a great company in downtown Raleigh.  

They have two wonderful  children;  Oliver was ten (June 30th). He enjoys "Minecraft" and collecting gems, minerals, and fossils.

Their daughter Nora was six on January 25th. Nora is very bright and a lot of fun!

They have a dog named Penny, a yellow lab mix, which is not in this picture.

July 2019
This is a picture was taken of my fourth daughter Jessica, her husband Tom and their daughters Leighton, Carly, and  Alex at "The Farm". 

They have a second home and a business on Long Beach Island on "the shore" in New Jersey.

Tom and Jessica own The Bay Avenue Plant Company  which is a retail floral and landscaping business. Tom manages the operations of the business while Jessica oversees the office management side. Tom decided to buy some land to use to process  yard trash from the business.  This land had a small house which they have remodeled and  live in currently with their three daughters, some chickens, and some bees as evidenced by the jars of honey they are holding in the picture.

Tom graduated from Flagler College in St Augustine. Jessica earned her BA in Business Management at the University of North Florida while pursuing her first career as principal soloist at the Florida Ballet in Jacksonville. 

Their daughter Leighton was six on February 11th. Their second daughter, Carly Gail Scangarello was three on March 3rd.  And, their third daughter, Alex Elizabeth Scangarello will be two on December 14th, 2019.

Pictured on the left at "the farm" is Tom, Leighton, Jessica, Alex, and Carly (with the jars of honey)!

July 4th, 2019

This is a picture of my
fifth and beautiful daughter Lindsay, her husband, Brett and their two children Curran and Liv. They moved to Hawaii from Jacksonville in February, 2018.

Brett currently has a nursing position with Queen's Hospital at Eva Beach on Oahu.
He works about three days a week which leaves three or four days a week for sightseeing and surfing.

They found a small but perfectly located house in Haleiva on the north shore.


Curran has already shown surfing talent on the small waves near them.

Their Daughter, Liv is "he life of the party".  She will be six in October..

Note:  The Tattoo "sleeves: on Curran and Liv are temporary.  They wanted to look like their dad for the picture.

The latest news is that Brett has been hired to work at Wilcox Medical Center on Kauai.  They will be moving at the end of this month (July) and plan to live on the north side of the island in Princeville near Hanaiei Bay.

Recent Grandchildren Pictures

Austin in Iceland July 2019

Hadden 2018

Eliza at Hopewell Rocks in New Brunswick, Canada
July 2019

Oliver, Nora and me looking at my cabochons
(One of my favorite pictures)
Nora and Oliver
Spring 2019

Leighton, Alex, and Carly,  Christmas 2018
Alex, Carly, and Leighton, Spring 2019

Curran and Liv on the north Shore of Oahu 2019
Curran and Liv's daily routine on the north shore

Surf Fishing

I used to love
surf fishing off the  beach at the naval base in Mayport. But it's a lot of work getting my gear out to the beach and back.
So, these days, I have to be satisfied with fishing from boats, canals, and the JAX Beach pier (when it gets repaired-Matthew). We're looking for a spot to fish near the "little jetties" or on the base in Mayport where we can pull my Rodeo right up to a good fising spot.

Pier Fishing

This is our JAX Beach Fishing Pier set-up!

This caddy has our cooler, bait bucket, four poles,
tackle box,two folding chairs, and an umbrella.

Unfortunately, the pier is still closed for fishing due to hurricane damage.
Pier Fishing- June 20th, 2016
It was a beautiful day, cooler than usual with a nice sea breeze. We fished the incoming tide from low for five hours.
We initally caught catfish but as we fished the deeper water behind the breakers we caught a pompano, sheepshead, and a couple of "spots"; too small to keep !

Bo with a small sheepshead

Diana with two small catfish

  New Jersey "shore" fishing with Jessica and Tom at Barnegat Bay/Long Beach Island
July, 2016

Diana and I enjoyed a nice day of fishing with Tom and Jessica on Baregat Bay. We caught several fish, but the best was Jessica's 19" flounder.

We also enjoyed swiming in their saline swiming pool  especially with their daughter Leighton.

Fishing with Kay and Gene Atkinson (friends from my VA-15 navy A-4 sqadron circa 1967)
at their home on Harker's Island, North Carolina
July and October, 2016

Diana and I enjoyed boating and fishing with Kay (left) anf Gene (driving the boat)

We fished lots of places inside the outer banks, but our favorite was close to the Cape Lookout lighthouse

Gene and I flew two combat cruises together In VA-15 (USS Intrepid CV-11) over South and North Vienam in the late spring to late fall of 1966 1nd 67.

We caught lots of small fish which Gene fried with softshall crab (good eatin')!

Charter Fishing with Steve Mullin of Fish Hunter Charters
December, 2016
My five daughters gave me (for my 75th birthday) eight hours of charter fishing in the St. John's eestuary with a guide, Steve Mullin (Fish Hunter Charters). We decided to split it up in to two trips. We completed our first trip with Steve on December 19th and kept 15 of the many yelllow mouth trout we landed. We, (mostly Diana) also caught  8-10 very nice bluefish but they all were just under 12" so they are alive and getting bigger for our next trip.  We are planning to do our next trip  on November 16th.

 Steve Mullin

Steve's Boat (24' center console walk around)

November 17, 2017 Trip
Diana holdiing her Spotted Sea Trout

Right- The total take home catch was seven nice Spotted Sea Trout (Dina's second from bottom) and two Sheepshead (caught by Steve Mullin)

Pictures of North Carolina Memories

This is a view of the cabin we had in the mountains near Spruce Pine and Burnsville North Carolins from 2008 until 2016.

This is a view of Mt. Ce,\lo of the Black Mountains from the back porch of our cabin.

 I love to spend time in the moutains of western North Carolina with Bo's Mine Tours.

Diana and King Tut waiting for Bo to return
from exploring the Hawk Mine off the Cane Creek

At a Folk Fest at our cabin

My Personal Page including Navy career, and Wedding and Family Pictures

"Any man may be asked in this century what he did to make his life worthwhile,

I think he can respond with a great deal of pride and satisfaction ....... I served in the U.S. Navy "

John F. Kennedy

"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling
which thinks nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is wiling to fight,
nothing that is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free
unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

John Stuart Mill

Lt. Bo Smith
A4 pilot in 1967 off the coast of North Vietnam
VA-15 Valions from USS Intrepid CV-11

Click HERE for 'High Flight'

This Golden Eagles plaque is in the Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola

I was selected as a member of the "Golden Eagles" in 2017.

Check out the "Golden Eagles" website to see why this is a significant event in my career!


The Golden Eagles Website

Website by:  Robert S. "Bo" Smith