Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who obtained the award in 1964 for his coverage of the assassination of US President John F. Kennedy.
As a child he became known by his middle name "Merriman," and was later given the nickname "Smitty."
He was the first journalist to publicly use the term "grassy knoll" in his coverage of the assassination.
He killed himself after his son was killed while serving in Vietnam.
He was presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Lyndon Johnson in 1967.