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Racquel Smith Gives Emotional Speech, Accepts Late Husband Will Smith’s Saints Hall Of Fame Honor [VIDEO]

Racquel Smith spoke publicly for the first time since her husband, Will Smith, was shot and killed earlier this year during his Saints Hall of Fame induction.

Smith’s speech was both emotional and powerful as she described her late husband, and the dark days that followed that tragic incident back in April. Racquel was shot twice in the legs during the incident that ultimately took her husband’s life.

On April 9, my worst fear came true when my husband was taken from me. I crumbled to my knees, literally. I knew it was only by God’s grace that I survived that night. I had to learn to walk again. I had severe nerve damage in my left leg and broke my femur bone. There were days when I couldn’t get out of bed nor did I want to get out of bed. But I knew I had to be strong for my three beautiful kids. And that’s when I felt Will the most.

Smith was a Super Bowl-winning defensive end for the Saints ranking fourth in career sacks with 67.5. The Pro Bowler was unanimously elected into the Saints Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility.

Racquel said she would always be the one that stood behind Will when they attended similar events, but knowing that the “honor meant the world to him” she had to be “his voice.”

I’m nervous. But for him, I would do anything.

Cardell Hayes, the man accused of shooting Will Smith, is set to stand trial later this year. Hopefully, justice will be served as Smith’s family and teammates continue to mourn the loss of a man who put the needs of everyone else before himself.

Joe Vitt, a longtime Saints assistant head coach and linebackers coach said Smith loved the game, and loved his team—but one thing always meant more than football.

the only thing he loved more than that is his precious family, and that’s the truth

Watch Racquel and the Smith family accept the Hall of Fame honor during halftime of the Saints-Seahawks game.

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Honoring two great families: Smiths and Gajans, into the #Saints Hall of Fame!

A photo posted by New Orleans Saints (@saints) on

[via YouTube]

FORMER SAINTS DEFENSIVE END WILL SMITH KILLED DURING ALTERCATION

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