- Associated Press - Friday, June 3, 2016

PHOENIX (AP) - A Navajo Code Talker has died in Arizona.

Navajo Nation officials announced Friday that Arcenio Smiley died Wednesday in Phoenix. His age wasn’t immediately available.

Smiley was born in New Mexico and served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1944-46, helping use the Navajo language to outsmart the Japanese in World War II.

He earned the marksman level qualification with the rifle in March 1944 and received the Congressional Silver Medal for his service as a Navajo Code Talker.

Smiley worked for the Navajo Service Warehouse (1949-51), Gallup Navajo Clinic (1951-53) and the Gallup Indian Medical Center’s Office of Environmental Health where he retired after 30 years of service in 1981.

Smiley is survived by several grandchildren.

Tribal officials say funeral services are scheduled Monday morning in Newcomb, New Mexico.

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