B. Simone is mourning the sudden passing of her ex-boyfriend, former NFL player Chris Smith.
The defensive end passed away at the age of 31 on Monday, April 17, according to The Salisbury Post. A cause of death has not been revealed. As news of the tragedy spread, Simone took to social media to pay tribute to Smith.
In her April 18 Instagram Story, she wrote, “Life is precious.” In another slide, the entrepreneur said, “One of the ONLY things in life that is promised, is death. Love on people when they are physically here, and if you truly love them cover them in prayer.”
“God is a God of no mistakes even when you are grieving or hurt. Trust him. He won’t fail you,” continued the post. She followed up by sharing a touching video of One Voice Worship choir singing “Not In a Hurry.”
In a separate tweet, she simply reiterated, “Life is precious [broken heart emoji].”
Simone and the former NFL defensive end dated for a few months in 2021. The “Wild ’N Out” comedian confirmed the relationship in April after months of fan speculation. Smith was by her side as she celebrated her 31st birthday and received a shout-out from his special lady.
“To my family, my friends and to the love of my life … Thank you for making this the best birthday ever. My heart is so full and I haven’t been this happy in a long time,” wrote the “Scheme Queens” actress in a post. But by July, the romance had fizzled out.
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In a past episode of her “Know For Sure” podcast, she claimed that Smith cheated on her but never admitted to the indiscretion. She said that last time they spoke was the day she broke up with him. Still, the loss of her one-time love stung.
Fans offered her support, writing, “Sorry for your loss sending prayers and healing” and “Sending you love boo!” in the comments of an unrelated post from April 17.
Smith’s high school alma mater, West Rowan in Salisbury, North Carolina, also paid tribute to him following the devastating news.
The school tweeted, “Rest in Peace to a West Rowan Legend! Chris was a better person than he was a player! The impact he had on those around him will be remembered forever,” alongside two photos of him, one in a Cleveland Browns uniform and the other while playing for the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Before going pro, the Salisbury native played collegiate football at the University of Arkansas. In 2014, Smith was a fifth-round NFL draft selection.
Smith played for the Browns from 2018 through 2019 before being traded to the Las Vegas Raiders. The Browns tweeted that they were saddened by his passing. Like West Rowan, they echoed a similar sentiment about the person he was.
“Chris was one of the kindest people, teammates and friends we’ve had in our organization. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time,” read the team’s message. During his eight-year NFL career, he also had stints with the Houston Texans, the Baltimore Ravens, and the Carolina Panthers.
Smith’s last post was on March 30 where he shared a video of himself in an XFL meeting. In March, he signed on to play for the Seattle Sea Dragons.
Smith is survived by his three children, daughters Alaina Grace and Haven Harris, and a son named Jayceon.