Hillard Smith, 66, has lived in Alabama for his entire life. Mr. Smith worked hard to raise his four children alongside his wife Dora. Hillard spent time with his family and coached local high school football for many years. Hillard love interacting with young people and giving back to his community. Unfortunately, Hillard’s life changed in 2004 when he was working as state highway worker and he was badly hit by a car. Hillard’s injuries left him hospitalized for 9 months and forced him to move out of his home and into the care of a 24 hour facility. Hillard battled rehabilitation for many months, and regained the ability to walk a bit over time.
Although Hillard’s life has changed significantly after his accident, he finds joy in his family, church, and Alabama football. Hillard has been a die hard fan of Alabama football since his cousin, the famous tight end Ozzie Neusome, played for Alabama in the 1970’s. Hillard has never been able to afford to go to a game live, but he has watched every Alabama game for the last fifty years and he reports that his room is fully decorated with Crimson Tide posters and figurines.
Hillard wished to attend an Alabama football game and finally connect with his favorite team. Wish of A Lifetime was so proud to be able to send Hillard and his son, Aaron, to the Alabama football game when they played Chatanooga on November 19th, 2016. Hillard loved seeing a Alabama victory, and was ‘smiling the whole time’. Mr. Smith’s son Aaron described the trip as one that he would never forget with his dad. Wish of A Lifetime was very proud to honor Mr. Smith’s wish and bring him to Tuscaloosa after so many years of waiting.