Local Innovator for People with Disabilities has Died

LUZERNE COUNTY, Pa. — An advocate for people with disabilities in our area has died.

Mark Smith died Sunday at age 47.

Smith was the General Manager for Public Relations and Consumer Research for Pride Mobility Products in Exeter.

Smith was born with cerebral palsy and was a leading advocate for people with disabilities in the region.

He also was the author of four books on living with disabilities and how technology helps people like him integrate.

Smith made news last spring when American Airlines removed him from a flight from the west coast without explanation. He believed it was because of his disability.

Quantum Rehab and Pride Mobility issued a statement saying:

“Mark E. Smith was Pride Mobility’s General Manager for Public Relations and Consumer Research for 18 years.  He was also a well-known member of the disability community as an author, public speaker and advocate.  Mark made a positive difference in the world through his writing, speaking and thousands of personal interactions.  He was perhaps best known for his popular and occasionally irreverent website “wheelchairjunkie.com.“ He led a rewarding, rich life with cerebral palsy and was a loving husband and father.  The fortitude Mark showed in facing the challenges of his life and the passion he had for making a difference in the lives of others was a great inspiration to all of us at Pride.  He will be deeply missed.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Holly, and daughters, Emily and Annabelle.”