Daniel Wayne Smith

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Daniel Wayne Smith
Born (1986-01-22)January 22, 1986
Mexia, Texas, U.S.
Died September 10, 2006(2006-09-10) (aged 20)
Nassau, Bahamas
Parent(s) Billy Wayne Smith
Anna Nicole Smith
Relatives Dannielynn Birkhead (half-sister)

Daniel Wayne Smith (January 22, 1986 – September 10, 2006) was the son of the American model and actress Anna Nicole and Billy Wayne Smith. He occasionally appeared in his mother's E! Network reality TV show.


Smith was born in Mexia, Texas, to Billy Wayne Smith and Vickie Lynn Hogan (later known as Anna Nicole Smith). After his parents separated in 1987, Daniel was raised by his mother and maternal grandmother, Virgie Mae Arthur, until he was six years old. He spent his childhood in a variety of different private schools.[1] He was the stepson of J. Howard Marshall II, whom his mother met at a strip club and married in 1994.

At age 16, Smith was featured as himself on his mother's reality television series, The Anna Nicole Show, which ran on the E! Entertainment Television channel from 2002 to 2004. The show's makeup artist remembered him as "a shy, sweet kid" and that his mother often worried that the camera crews were upsetting him.[1] He was always shown in the opening credits, but his actual appearances were minimal. In a second-season episode he would mention that he no longer wanted to be part of the show. He was also seen with his mother in E! True Hollywood Story. Daniel played bit parts in two of his mother's films, Skyscraper and To the Limit. Described by Anna as a straight-A honor student,[2] he had last been attending classes at Los Angeles Valley College in the summer of 2006.[1]


Smith died in his mother's hospital room while visiting her at the maternity ward in Doctors Hospital in Nassau, Bahamas, on September 10, 2006, just three days after she had given birth to his half-sister, Dannielynn Hope Marshall.[3] Cyril Wecht, an American forensic pathologist, stated Daniel Smith accidentally overdosed on methadone, Zoloft and Lexapro. On an episode of True Crime with Aphrodite Jones, and at the Daniel Smith's inquest Larry Birkhead stated that security in the house indicated that Smith had stolen his mother's methadone.[4]

Investigation and inquest[edit]

Her Majesty's Coroner, Linda P. Virgill, announced on September 12 that "The cause of death is not natural. However, we wish to reserve the cause of death at this time pending the toxicologist examination and report for confirmation of cause of death. Friday is the likely release date for the autopsy and toxicology report" Virgill announced that an inquest would take place. "The inquest would happen late October or early November to determine how, when and by what manner Daniel came to his death." "All persons who are relevant witnesses, like his mother and hospital staff and airline personnel who had contact with him, would have to testify"[5][6]

The following day, Bradley Neely, the chief inspector of the coroner's office, told the Associated Press that death seemed "suspicious... Whenever there is a suspicious death we would have an inquest to determine how the person died,"[7] Coroner Linda Virgill held a September 13 news conference and said a coroner's inquest would begin October 23. She described the death as "suspicious" because it was sudden and because Daniel was only 20 years old and very young, clarifying earlier statements by saying that it was "unnatural" for a man of 20 to die suddenly. She cautioned that the scheduling of an inquest did not necessarily mean foul play was suspected. "Whenever we have sudden deaths, and we term them 'suspicious deaths,' it is usual to have this type of procedure," The death would be considered suspicious until jurors determine otherwise according to Virgill.[8]

On September 14, an attorney, Michael Scott, read a prepared statement. "The devastation and grief over Daniel's sudden death coupled with the sedation has been so extreme that Anna Nicole experienced memory loss of the event," "Anna Nicole was so distraught at the loss of Daniel that she refused to leave his side and it was necessary to sedate her in order to check her out of the hospital," Scott said that the third person in the room at the time of the death was another one of Anna Nicole Smith's attorneys, Howard K. Stern. It "was necessary for Howard to tell Anna again that Daniel had passed away".[9] Mr. Scott was a partner in the law firm Callenders and Co. and would later reveal that he had been asked by the real estate developer G. Ben Thompson and an associate, who he said were friends of Ms. Smith, to act on her behalf after the sudden death of her 20-year-old son Daniel.[10] Scott, Callenders and Co., and G. Ben Thompson were to figure prominently as Anna Nicole Smith's adversaries in the highly politicized Bahamian residency scandal surrounding her disputed home ownership.

On September 20, 2006, authorities issued a death certificate for the son of Anna Nicole Smith but left the cause of death undetermined pending toxicology tests.[11]

In March 2008, Bahamas jury determined that Anna Nicole Smith's son died from an accidental drug overdose and recommended no criminal charges.[12]

Funeral in the Bahamas[edit]

Howard K. Stern told Florida Circuit Judge Larry Seidlin during his testimony in the Anna Nicole Smith's body custody trial: "At Daniel's funeral, she had them open the coffin and tried to climb inside. She said that "If Daniel has to be buried, I want to be buried with him," Stern testified. "She was ready to go down with him."[13] Howard K. Stern revealed that "Anna saw herself as both mother and father to Daniel. From the time I met her, everything was for Daniel. I would say that physically, she died last week, but in a lot of ways, emotionally she died when Daniel died," he added.[14][15]

On October 7, Daniel's friends and family, including his father Billy Smith and grandmother Virgie Arthur, gathered at the First Baptist Church of Mexia for a separate memorial service while Anna Nicole remained with Howard K. Stern in the Bahamas. Daniel was eulogized at the service by his great-grandfather Gus Moser.[16] Daniel was finally buried at New Providence, Bahamas, on October 19, 2006.[17] According to Howard K. Stern, Smith's long-time companion, she was devastated over her son's death. "Anna and Daniel were inseparable. Daniel was without question the most important person in Anna’s life."

Independent autopsy[edit]

Dr. Cyril Wecht was hired by Callenders and Co., a Bahamian law firm, to do an independent autopsy.[18] Wecht stated Daniel Smith died as a result of the interaction of methadone, an analgesic, and the antidepressants Zoloft and Lexapro. The metabolism and the breakdown of the methadone is delayed in the presence of Zoloft, according to Wecht. Methadone can alter the cardiac rhythm – it’s referred to as a prolongation of the QT interval. "When that is prolonged, the individual could even lose consciousness, and suffer cardiac dysrhythmia. And that is something that can happen from methadone alone, and in the presence of Zoloft and Lexapro, it is more likely to happen," "I don’t mean frequently, and certainly not predictably, so tragically, with this young man this is what happened. So I have no question at all as to the cause of death."[19][20]

Wecht later told the press that he had not been paid. He told the Bahama Journal that he had originally been contacted by Michael Scott, and was ostensibly working with him and Tracey Ferguson (of Callenders and Co.). Scott and Ferguson dropped out of the picture, and attorney Wayne Munroe took over Ms. Smith’s representation. "I believe, quite frankly, that there has been some breakdown in communication, and quite possibly some antagonism. Scott and Ferguson were representing real estate developer G. Ben Thompson in an action against Anna Nicole Smith over her house in the Bahamas.[21]

On February 8, 2007, Wecht said on Fox News that there was still no information available as to how Daniel obtained methadone. Although methadone is prescribed in place of other opioids for pain relief and is used in the treatment of heroin and morphine addiction, Wecht had said he had no information to make any conclusion about why Daniel was using it.[22] On February 14, it was reported that his mother Anna Nicole Smith had been given a prescription for methadone under a false name while she was in her eighth month of pregnancy.[23] Ford Shelley claimed that methadone was found in Anna's bedroom refrigerator while her Bahamas mansion was being reclaimed by his father-in-law, real estate developer G. Ben Thompson.[24]

Assistant Commissioner Reginald Ferguson has confirmed that the Royal Bahamian Police has completed its investigation and has sent their file to the Attorney General.[17] The Chief Magistrate of the Bahamas announced that a formal inquiry into the death of Daniel Smith was scheduled for March 27, 2007.[25]

Anna Nicole Smith estate[edit]

Anna Nicole Smith died suddenly on February 8, 2007, less than five months after her son's death. A Florida circuit court judge, Larry Seidlin, who oversaw the disposition of Smith's body, ordered Anna Nicole Smith's will produced. It was released on February 16, 2007.[26][27] The "Will of Vickie Lynn Marshall" was signed on July 30, 2001 and declares:

I am unmarried. I have one child DANIEL WAYNE SMITH. I have no deceased children nor predeceased children leaving issue. Except as otherwise provided in this Will, I have intentionally omitted to provide for my spouse and other heirs, including future spouses and children and other descendants now living and those hereafter born or adopted, as well as existing and future stepchildren and foster children.

All of the property of my estate ... shall be distributed to HOWARD K. STERN, Esq., to hold in trust for my child under such terms as he and a court of competent jurisdiction may declare, such that my children are distributed sufficient sums...and support according to their accustomed manner of living....[28]


  1. ^ a b c "Who was Daniel Wayne Smith?". Newsday. Archived from the original on February 28, 2007. Retrieved September 25, 2006. 
  2. ^ "Anna Nicole Smith's Son Dies". Larry King Live. Retrieved September 12, 2006. 
  3. ^ "Anna Nicole's Son Dies, Daughter Is Born". People. Retrieved September 11, 2006. 
  4. ^ "Drug use by Anna Nicole's son recalled in death inquest". Associated Press, March 16,2008.
  5. ^ Linda Trischitta (September 12, 2006). "Anna Nicole's Son: Death Was Not Natural". people.com. Archived from the original on February 22, 2007. Retrieved February 22, 2007. 
  6. ^ Stephen M. Silverman (September 12, 2006). "Anna Nicole Smith 'Tried to Wake' Her Son". people.com. Archived from the original on February 22, 2007. Retrieved February 22, 2007. 
  7. ^ Gina Serpe (September 13, 2006). "Anna Nicole Grieves "Suspicious" Death". eonline. Archived from the original on February 22, 2007. Retrieved February 22, 2007. 
  8. ^ John Marquis (September 14, 2006). "Bahamas inquest set in death of Anna Nicole's son". Reuters. Archived from the original on February 22, 2007. Retrieved February 22, 2007. 
  9. ^ JESSICA ROBERTSON (September 14, 2006). "Lawyer Says Smith Tried to Revive Son". Associated Press. Archived from the original on February 22, 2007. Retrieved February 22, 2007. 
  10. ^ Quincy Parker (October 30, 2006). "Attorney Says Immigration Minister Should Resign". The Bahama Journal. Archived from the original on October 31, 2006. Retrieved February 22, 2007. 
  11. ^ "She's much better," he told the AP. "You never get over that, you get through it. Time is the catalyst for that."At this time he added that Anna Nicole Smith has been granted permanent residency in the Bahamas."Authorities issue death certificate for Anna Nicole Smith's son". AP. September 21, 2006. Archived from the original on February 22, 2007. Retrieved February 22, 2007. 
  12. ^ "Jury: Anna Nicole's Son Death An Accident". CBS. com, Associated Press, March 31, 2008.
  13. ^ "Howard K. Stern says Anna wanted to be buried next to her son". recordonline.com. Retrieved April 20, 2007. 
  14. ^ "Howard K. Stern: Anna was my whole world". people.com. Retrieved April 20, 2007. 
  15. ^ "Howard K. Stern talks Father's Day". Art Harris:The Bald Truth. Retrieved June 16, 2007. 
  16. ^ "Mexia says goodbye to celebrity son". The Waco Tribune-Herald. Archived from the original on October 25, 2006. Retrieved October 8, 2006. 
  17. ^ a b "Funeral Held for Anna Nicole Smith's Son". People. Retrieved October 19, 2006. 
  18. ^ Quincy Parker (January 23, 2007). "Anna Nicole May Not Pay Callenders". The Bahama Journal. Archived from the original on February 17, 2007. Retrieved February 17, 2007. 
  19. ^ Nicole Weisensee Egan (September 28, 2006). "Pathologist: Meds Killed Daniel Smith". People. people.com. Archived from the original on February 17, 2007. Retrieved February 17, 2007. 
  20. ^ Quincy Parker (November 27, 2006). "Pathologist Ready To Testify If Needed". The Bahama Journal. Bahamas News Online Edition. Archived from the original on February 18, 2007. Retrieved February 18, 2007. 
  21. ^ Quincy Parker (November 21, 2006). "Anna Nicole's Pathologist Says He Hasn't Been Paid". The Bahama Journal. Bahamas News Online Edition. Archived from the original on February 18, 2007. Retrieved February 18, 2007. 
  22. ^ "Pathologist: 'Classical' drug combo killed Smith's son". CNN. Archived from the original on September 28, 2006. Retrieved September 27, 2006. 
  23. ^ "The Doctor Who Scored Methadone for Anna Nicole". TMZ. Retrieved February 14, 2006. 
  24. ^ "Did Methadone Contribute To Anna's Death?". CBS News. Archived from the original on February 22, 2007. Retrieved February 12, 2006. 
  25. ^ "Inquiry set in death of Daniel Smith". 9 News. Retrieved January 18, 2007. 
  26. ^ Balogh, Stefanie (February 18, 2007). "Anna's daughter left out". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved February 18, 2007. 
  27. ^ "Anna Nicole Smith's will leaves everything to dead son". CNN. Retrieved February 16, 2007. 
  28. ^ "Will of Vickie Lynn Marshall" (PDF). July 30, 2001. Archived from the original (pdf) on February 22, 2007. Retrieved February 22, 2007. 

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