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On Saturday, former Saints football player Will Smith was put to rest in a private service at the Saenger Theater in New Orleans. Smith’s family, friends, colleagues and Saints coaches all came to celebrate Smith’s life. Smith’s widow Racquel, who was shot in each leg and suffering from a shattered femur, was also there in a wheelchair.

According to, a “heartbreaking” letter Smith wrote in 2011 was published on the back of his obituary.

In that letter, he previously wrote that, “When I die I don’t want people to cry. I lived a wonderful life. I was very gifted with a great family, lovely kids and a great wife, who put up with my BS!!! (sic) I have no regrets.I want my kids to grow up to be whoever they want to be. I don’t want you to dictate your life based upon what society says is right. We all create our right and wrong.”

Saints coach Sean Payton, teammate Jonathan Vilma and former Saints Player Malcolm Jenkins all spoke during the ceremony and songs from Alicia Keys, Smith’s favorite singer, were played as well, noted.

In addition, on Friday, there was also a public parade held to honor Smith’s life in the streets of NOLA, NBC News reported.

As Hello Beautiful previously reported, Smith, 34, was killed last weekend during an alleged attack of road rage from a driver who crashed into Smith’s car and shot the former football player eight times. Cardell Hayes, 28, has been charged with second-degree murder. Hayes’ lawyer John Fuller claims that new surveillance footage will prove that his client is not “legally guilty.” They also claim that the Smiths were visiting a strip club the night of his death, the Daily Mail noted.

However, Peter Thomson, the lawyer representing the Smith family, told that Fuller is a “desperate defense attorney who, as before, is frantically trying to mislead everyone and distract from the fact that his client murdered Will Smith in cold blood and intentionally shot Will’s wife.”

We send our deepest condolences to the Smith family.


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Laid To Rest: Retired NFL Player Will Smith’s Life Celebrated In New Orleans  was originally published on