Ryan Smith remembered by friends, teammates
MOORE — The overall goodness of people never ceases to amaze me, especially in the wake of a tragedy.
Friday, Edmond North beat Westmoore 27-13 at Moore Stadium. The Huskies were playing with heavy hearts, as Ryan Smith, their sophomore defensive lineman, died late Wednesday night.
The Westmoore football booster club put buckets at entrance gates and concession stands to collect donations to help Ryan’s family with burial costs.
By halftime, $900 had been raised. And after the game, Westmoore presented Edmond North with $900, and that was just from the donations collected at the gate and at Westmoore-side concession stands. Money donated on the Edmond North side of the stadium had yet to be counted.
This has by far been the toughest assignment I’ve had in my career. Dealing with death is never easy, especially when it is someone as young as Ryan was. And by all accounts, he was a great kid.
I talked with a few of Ryan’s friends from the Edmond North team last night after the game. Here are their thoughts about their fallen friend.
JUNIOR DAVION WOODFORK
Junior running back Davion Woodfork, who, like Smith, transferred from Edmond Santa Fe before this school year, was one of Smith’s close friends.
“We came over at the same time,” Woodfork said. “We used to always talk about being in the NFL, and he used to be like, ‘I’m gonna block for you.’
“(The win) was good. It was all for him.
“He was a very good friend. He was always motivated. He loved football. He was always there for me.
“He will never be forgotten.”
SOPHOMORE TAEVYON WARREN
Taevyon Warren, also a sophomore on the Huskies’ team and also a first-year Edmond North student, wore a tribute to his friend on Friday.
Warren wasn’t suited up for the game, but wore a white T-shirt with “R.I.P. Ryan Smith #67” written on the back in black marker.
“It’s a tribute,” Warren said of the t-shirt. “We’ll never forget him, and this is my way of showing my respect.”
Warren said Ryan was a great friend and a good listener.
“With both of us being new, we just bonded,” Warren said. “Just his presence, just him being around would make your day.
Warren also raps, and he and his friends recorded a song Thursday dedicated to Smith’s memory.
“We did a remix of a song, talking about how life is short and how you never expect it to end,” Warren said. “We just talked about Ryan and how good a person he was.”
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