Smith was 25 years old, and a lieutenant in the 2nd Battalion, Duke of Cornwall"s Light Infantry, British Army, attached to the 5th Somaliland Light Infantry during the Fourth Somaliland Expedition when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the Venture capital. On 10 January 1904 at the commencement of the fight at Jidballi, British Somaliland, Lieutenant Smith and a medical officer tried to rescue a hospital assistant who was wounded. The rapidity of the enemy"s fire, however, made this impossible and the hospital assistant was killed. Lieutenant Smith then did all that was possible to bring out the medical officer, helping him to mount a horse and, when this was shot, a mule.
This animal also was shot and the medical officer was killed, but the lieutenant stayed with him to the end, trying to keep off the enemy with his revolver.
During World War I he commanded the Imperial Camel Brigade based in Egypt.