River Kelly Smith, Granger Smith’s son, has died tragically, the country star said in a post that was published on his social media channels
Smith sent out the post on June 6 at around 2 p.m. Eastern time. The singer described the news as “unthinkable” and said that his son passed away following a “tragic accident.” Despite the efforts of doctors, River Kelly Smith, who just turned 3, Smith and his wife, Amber Bartlett, made the heartbreaking decision to turn off life support.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. River’s Organs Will Be Donated to ‘Give Other Children a Second Chance at Life’
Smith said that his son’s organs will be donated to “so that other children will be given a second chance at life.” Smith referred to his son as “Riv” and said that everyone who met his child “knew” that he was special. Smith said that his family was “devastated and heartbroken.”
In a separate message on her Instagram page, Smith’s wife, Amber, wrote, “In lieu of flowers or gifts, please send donations to Dell Children’s Medical Center in River’s name. The doctors, nurses and staff have been incredible.” Bartlett also posted the same message as her husband.
2. River Was the Youngest of 3 Siblings
Smith married his wife in February 2011. She gave birth to the couple’s first child, a daughter named London, in October 2011. The couple’s first son, Lincoln, was born in January 2014. River Kelly Smith was the couple’s youngest child, he was born on May 16, 2016.
In the wake of the tragedy, Smith, a native of Dallas, announced that his June 6 concert in Kansas City has been canceled.
3. Smith Said in the Summer of 2018 That He Was Looking Forward to ‘Slowing Down’ to Help His Wife With Their 3 Kids
In August 2018, Smith told Taste of Country that he was planning to spend more time at home to help his wife with the kids. Smith said, “I’m trying to learn to slow down. It’s an art to learn how to slow down. I’m going to do a lot of school deliveries and pickups in the fall.” When asked about how his wife coped at home while he was on the road, Smith said, “She’s slammed at home with three little kids and schools and activities and all that, so she’s doing her best. She does go out when she has time, and she’ll take an audition or she’ll take a reading somewhere and she’s doing commercials. She loves doing them because they are a quick shoot and good money. She does have big dreams.”
4. River Starred in His Dad’s Video for ‘Happens Like That’
Smith had River, and his wife, on set for his music video, Happens Like That, in 2017. Smith told CMT about the video saying, “This has been the most extensive music video I’ve done, and we’ve done a lot of them. We shot the video in a massive cornfield and a silo and it gives the video this mysterious tone. TK had a vision that the imagery would be kind of like a memory and these lightning strikes make time pass through these stages of life and love. It was amazing to have my beautiful wife Amber and my son, River, on set. My three kids have now all made cameos in my videos.”
5. River’s Tragic Passing Has Resulted in an Outpouring of Emotion on Social Media
As news of River Smith’s tragic passing spread across the internet, fans have taken to social en masse to mourn the loss of the beautiful child. Here are some of most poignant messages: