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Arkansas Razorback coach gives fan signed picture, letter

January 6, 2019

EL DORADO, Ark. (AP) — Local resident Kathleen Smith recently received a signed photograph and personal letter from Arkansas Razorback’s head football coach, Chad Morris.

Smith, who is almost 85 years old and resides at Hudson Senior Center, said while watching the Razorbacks play against Ole Miss on Oct. 13, she jumped up and fell, breaking her hip.

“As well as I can remember, I was sitting in a chair and I jumped up when we scored a touchdown,” Smith told the El Dorado News-Times . “I jumped so high and so hard that when I came down, it kind of knocked me out.”

She had surgery the following day, and the first thing she asked when waking up was “who won?”

“I remember that when they told me that they lost, it made me so mad,” she said, laughing. “I got mad at the doctor ... I got mad at everybody because I have always, and always will be, a Razorback fan.”

The Razorbacks lost 37-33 during the game against Ole Miss.

Another resident at the senior center had a granddaughter visiting, who told Bill Odom that she works at the university and told him to reach out to Chad Morris.

“I called coach Morris’ secretary and she said he was always real kind to do things like that, to respond personally,” Odom said. “And the next thing you know, (Smith) got a letter and a picture and she was thrilled.”

The signed photograph and handwritten letter was delivered to Smith while she was recovering from her fall at the nursing home.

“I am so sorry to hear that you fell during our game last Saturday,” Morris wrote. “Our entire Razorback staff and players are praying for a quick recovery. We appreciate your support and love for the Razorbacks. I promise that we will get this program back to the top. Please take care and stay strong — Just keep getting better every day. Hope to see you when I come to El Dorado. Go Hogs!”

Smith said she and her husband were big Razorback fans and they used to go to every game they could. She became a Razorback fan when she started dating her husband, who was a big fan, she said. She said she started reading the newspaper’s sports section to learn about the Hogs.

She joked, saying that’s why he asked her to marry him, “because he thought I was a big Razorback fan,” she laughed.

“So we were Razorback fans, both of us, until he died,” she said. “So I’ve become the Razorback girl of this whole house.”

She said her and her husband were married for 50 years.

Smith has been living at the senior center for almost three years. In her room, her walls are filled with photos of family members, and now a framed photo of the letter from Morris.

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Information from: El Dorado News-Times, http://www.eldoradonews.com

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