BIG SANDY — Although Lovie Smith spends hours and hours each week preparing his Chicago Bears for their latest NFL game, the Big Sandy native always takes time to find out how his Wildcats fare each week.
And Smith just doesn’t just check up from afar as he makes annual trips to East Texas; and is a big booster to the Big Sandy school district. He was a member of three state football title teams in the mid-1970s, those legendary Wildcat squads.
Now, there’s a new scoreboard in Big Sandy donated by the Thurman Smith Family.
“I’m not supposed to advertise who donated it, but a Chicago Bear donated the scoreboard to us,” Big Sandy coach Larry Minter said. “We are very lucky to have him as a supporter. He has done everything from buying our kids cleats to building a $50,000 scoreboard.
“He is one of the good guys in the NFL and has always looked out for us back here at home.”
Minter sent Smith a photo of the scoreboard as the Bears coach is busy conducting training camp in Lake Forest, Ill.
“He was very excited about seeing photos of the scoreboard,” Minter said. “He wants to see the homeside numbers higher than the visitor’s side. He’s about winning.”
Mr. Thurman Smith, father of Lovie, passed away in 1996, while Mrs. Mae Evelyn Chalk Smith, passed away in 2011. He also has four sisters and a brother.
He is an active supporter of the American Diabetes Association. In addition to participating in various events for the ADA, he also donates 10 tickets to every Bears game to children suffering from diabetes in honor of his mother.