Students React to Sudden Death

By: Mike Tolbert
By: Mike Tolbert

Sixteen-year-old Johnny Smith complained of trouble breathing and died in the hospital Wednesday while being treated for pneumonia. Johnny Smith recently moved to Tallahassee from Chicago and had only been here a couple of months. But in that short time, he touched a lot of lives.

His JV football coach and several of his friends spent Thursday collecting items of Johnny’s from his helmet to his wristband which they plan to send to his family in Chicago. Students also wore pictures of Johnny around school.

We talked to Johnny’s best friend who played Johnny’s position of running back in Wednesday night's game, even running his friends favorite play.

"It felt pretty good to run my best friends favorite play cuz he was like a brother to me. I kinda felt his pain when he got hit I got hit. I felt what he felt when he ran the ball. Kinda felt just like him."

And Godby did win that game.

David and Johnny’s Coach Chuck Kilbourn plan to head up to Chicago for the funeral which should take place late next week. All of his teammates say their entire season has been dedicated to Johnny. His sister did stop by the school on Thursday and told coaches he went into cardiac arrest during his treatment.


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