Country Star Granger Smith Reveals 3-Yr.-Old Son Passed Away in Tragic Accident

Granger Smith

Country music fans are mourning with singer/songwriter Granger Smith and his wife, Amber, this week as the couple announced the tragic death of their 3-year-old son, River Kelly.

Granger Smith took to Instagram Thursday to deliver the “unthinkable news.”

The 39-year-old didn’t reveal how his son died but said only that River’s death came following a tragic accident. “Despite doctor’s best efforts, he was unable to be revived,” Smith wrote.

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A representative of Smith later confirmed that the toddler’s tragic death was a drowning at the family’s home.

 

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I have to deliver unthinkable news. We’ve lost our youngest son, River Kelly Smith. Following a tragic accident, and despite doctor’s best efforts, he was unable to be revived. Amber and I made the decision to say our last goodbyes and donate his organs so that other children will be given a second chance at life. Our family is devastated and heartbroken, but we take solace in knowing he is with his Heavenly Father. Riv was special. Everyone that met him knew that immediately. The joy he brought to our lives cannot be expressed and his light will be forever in our hearts. If there are words to say more, I cannot find them in this moment. Love the ones close to you. There has never been a more difficult moment for us than this. . . 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.

A post shared by Granger Smith (@grangersmith) on

“Amber and I made the decision to say our last goodbyes and donate his organs so that other children will be given a second chance at life,” Smith wrote with a joyful picture of him hugging River.

Smith, who is also dad to 7-year-old daughter, London and 5-year-old son, Lincoln Monarch, said the family is “devastated and heartbroken.”

Granger Smith

“But we take solace in knowing he is with his Heavenly Father,” he added.”

In her own post on Instagram, Amber wrote, “Nothing can prepare a mother to deliver this kind of news.”

 

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Nothing can prepare a mother to deliver this kind of news. We’ve lost our youngest son, River Kelly Smith. Following a tragic accident, and despite doctor’s best efforts, he was unable to be revived. Granger and I made the decision to say our last goodbyes and donate his organs so that other children will be given a second chance at life. Our family is devastated and heartbroken, but we take solace in knowing he is with his Heavenly Father. Riv was special. Everyone that met him knew that immediately. The joy he brought to our lives cannot be expressed and his light will be forever in our hearts. If there are words to say more, we cannot find them in this moment. Love the ones close to you. There has never been a more difficult moment for us than this. . . 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.

A post shared by Amber Smith (@amberemilysmith) on

River Kelly’s death comes just one year after another high-profile couple, Bode and Morgan Miller, lost their daughter to a swimming pool drowning. The Millers have since become vocal advocates for water safety.

Morgan shared her condolences with the family in an Instagram story writing, “My heart breaks. Another baby gone too soon.”

Unfortunately, the Smiths and the Millers are just two of the thousands of families who endure this preventable death every year, as drowning is the leading cause of death in children ages 1 to 4.

According to new guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), children should learn to swim at the age of 1.

“Research has found that swim lessons are beneficial for children starting around age 1, and may lower drowning rates”, said Dr. Linda Quan, a co-author of the policy statement.

“Learning to swim is a great family activity,” she says. “Families can talk with their pediatrician about whether their child is developmentally ready for swim lessons, and then look for a program that has experienced, well-trained instructors. Ideally, programs should teach ‘water competency’ too — the ability to get out of the water if your child ends up in the water unexpectedly.”

Of course, even the best swim lessons cannot “drown-proof” a child. The AAP recommends parents take steps to make a child’s environment safer — especially around any sort of water, from swimming pools to bathtubs, as a toddler can drown in less than a minute.

Experts suggest that if a child is not fully able to swim and is in the pool with an inflatable device, the parent or guardian also needs to be in the pool within an arm’s reach from the child.

Over the weekend, fellow country music star Dierks Bentley dedicated his hit song, “I Hold On,” to Smith during his performance at CMA Fest in Nashville.

 

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#CMAFest 📸: @zachbelcher08

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“He’s going through a tough time right now,” Bentley told the crowd.

Several other members of the Country Music community shared their support for the family over the weekend as many of them were gathered for one of Country’s biggest nights in Nashville.

Our prayers go out to the Smith family, who is holding tight to the beautiful memories they have of their little boy.

“Riv was special,” Smith wrote in his Instagram post. “Everyone that met him knew that immediately. The joy he brought to our lives cannot be expressed and his light will be forever in our hearts. If there are words to say more, I cannot find them in this moment. Love the ones close to you. There has never been a more difficult moment for us than this.”


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Bri Lamm
Bri Lamm is the Editor of ForEveryMom.com! An outgoing introvert with a heart that beats for adventure, she lives to serve the Lord, experience the world, and eat macaroni and cheese all while capturing life’s greatest moments on one of her favorite cameras. Follow her on Facebook!