Former District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith passed away on September 10, 2021. He was born to Royce Mervin Smith and Lou Alice Smith on January 11, 1971, in Jackson, Mississippi. Born into a loving Christian family, he was the son and grandson of ministers of the gospel. Robert Shuler was baptized at an early age at Rosemont Baptist Church by his grandfather, Rev. David D. Smith.
He was raised in a family that taught their sons the value of education. His fervor for education and Christian beliefs were the driving forces that led him to fight for equity and justice. Robert Shuler graduated from Forest Hill High School and Tougaloo College. He attended Saint Louis University School of Law in St. Louis, Missouri, graduating in 1996 with a Juris Doctor degree and was admitted to the Mississippi State Bar in September 1996. Attorney Robert Smith was licensed to practice law in all courts in the State of Mississippi, including the Supreme Court of Mississippi as well as the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals located in New Orleans, Louisiana.
He began his practice as an attorney in the location of the former Smith’s Supermarket owned by his grandfather, Rev. R.L.T. Smith. Robert worked as a Prosecutor with the City of Jackson and a Public Defender with Hinds County. He was sworn in as the Hinds County District Attorney in 2008 and served 12 years. For the past year and a half, Attorney Smith has been running the Cochran Law Firm in Jackson.
Attorney Smith was a member of numerous professional and community organizations, including the Mississippi Bar Association, Magnolia Bar Association, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), and Central Mississippi Health Services, Inc. He consistently gave back to his community as a member of the West Jackson Community Development Corporation and as a volunteer mentor for Jackson Public Schools.
Robert Shuler was preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Rev. R.L.T. Smith and Mrs. Annie Louise Smith, and maternal grandfather, Rev. David D. Smith.
Robert leaves to lovingly remember him, his parents, Dr. Lou Alice Smith and Dr. Royce Mervin Smith, Jackson, MS; his maternal grandmother, Mrs. Pinkie Smith Amos, Jackson, MS; son, Raphael Shuler Smith, Hawthorne, New Jersey; daughter, Jada Smith, Washington, D.C.; brother, Royce Mervin (Lynda) Smith, Jr., Pearl, MS; nephew, Royce L.T. Smith; niece; Chanita Hicks; many aunts, uncles, cousins, and other relatives and friends; and his faithful dog, Odie.
Visitation was held September 14 at Lakeover Funeral Home, Jackson, MS. A private family graveside service was held September 15.