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tony hipchest
10-27-2011, 12:20 AM
now i understand that there are many who feel keeping aaron smith was a detriment to this team, and financially it was. but i understand it.

in the cuthroat world of sports, and in a league where contracts are NOT guaranteed, i can sometimes give a pass to the rooneys as one of the few franchises who will occasionally make an exception and honor a contract THE OWNER signs.

the family atmosphere has saved millions of dollars with hometown discounts and prevented players such as troy, woodley, ward, timmons, clark, colon, kemo, miller, ike, hoke, keisel, and hopefully wallace etc. from strong arming the franchise.




It is often played on bagpipes at police and military funerals. It has become a traditional song of parting, a song of farewell.





Mad Jack Churchill, the only known British soldier to have felled an enemy with a longbow in the course of World War II, picked up his bagpipes and played it to keep his men in battle during a raid in the Balkans. Out of ammunition, he played on until knocked unconscious by an enemy grenade. The Germans captured him and took him to a POW camp. He escaped, of course.







When Bobby Jones visited the town of St Andrews in 1958, it was his first visit in 22 years. The townsfolk loved Bobby like they loved no other, and there was a ceremony where he was made a Freeman of the town, and given the right to chase rabbits on the course, and even the ancient right to dry laundry on the first and 18th holes. He was the first American to be given that honor since Benjamin Franklin, but Bobby was crippled by a terrible disease and had not played golf in years. He got out of his motorized wheelchair, stood, and delivered a thank you that has become legend in the world of golf.





As Bobby got back into his wheelchair and headed down the center aisle to leave, a single tenor began to sing this song. Then, as one, the entire community joined in. The great golf writer, Herbert Warren Wind, was there, and he wrote, "so honestly heartfelt was this reunion for Bobby Jones and the people of St. Andrews (and for everyone) that it was 10 minutes before many who attended were able to speak again with a tranquil voice."





The song is called Bonnie Charlie, and its stanzas tell of the Jacobite rising in England, and a bloody civil war that ended with the Battle of Culloden, that led to the exile of Bonnie Prince Charlie, and the end of the House of Stuart. But the chorus has a universal meaning, and it deals with the pain of parting.





Will ye no come back again?

Will ye no come back again?

Better loved ye cannot be.

Will ye no come back again?





Those words reflect the feeling of Aaron Smith’s teammates Saturday morning, when they received word that his neck injury had become so painful that it will require surgery. Aaron Smith would go on Injured Reserve, and would play no more this year. Probably never again.



*********

In Monday’s Tribune-Review, Dejan Kovacevic writes how Smith sat down with a group of his teammates and talked about the injury, his hopes for the future, and what he thought about the only NFL team he ever played for or ever will play for. It was followed by a long silence.





Then his great friend and bookend DE Brett Kiesel asked, "are you going to come with us?"



Kiesel was talking about the flight to Arizona, and the game against Steelers West.





Kovacevic writes that Smith smiled and said, "Well, what else am I going to do? Am I going to sit around and mope? No, I'm coming."





Smith worked the sidelines Sunday, giving encouragement to all and tips to his young pups. This, of course, came as no surprise to anyone who knows anything about Aaron Smith.

And that’s why Saturday’s announcement was so profound. Brett Kiesel and several other Steelers told Kovacevic that they plan to dedicate the 2011 season to Aaron.




"He's one of the greatest Steelers to ever put on a uniform," Keisel told the Trib. "There aren't a lot of guys who have played and battled like he has. Everyone looks up to that. We love him. We respect him. The least we can do is go out and win games for him."





Late in yesterday’s game, Ryan Clark put his forehead on Smith’s left shoulder on the sideline and said something to him.



After the game, Kovacevic asked what was said, and Clark said he told him, "I’m going to miss you, man."



When Dejan asked Clark to elobrate, his eyes welled.



"He's a guy you root for, but he's a guy we love."









excellent article. too much to post here. peter king actually defered to it as a tribute to smith.

http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2011/10/24/2510414/better-loved-ye-cannot-be-aaron-smith-and-the-pittsburgh-steelers

Bayz101
10-27-2011, 12:30 AM
The Rooney family has put together and maintained a well respected and first class franchise. The Rooney's understand that it takes heart to win, not just skill. If that wasn't the case, we wouldn't have got rid of Holmes for a lackluster draft pick. He was making a statement.

That statement was that no matter how good you are. No matter how well you play and how great you claim to be. If your heart isn't in it, and you aren't being the man you need to be on and off the field. Your gone.

Thanks for the years of service Aaron. We'll see you coaching the defensive line sometime soon i'm sure. Good luck!

DanRooney
10-27-2011, 01:15 AM
I'm surprised Tony isn't saying let's sign him for another 5 years. Ziggy isn't ready yet.

Bayz101
10-27-2011, 01:23 AM
I'm surprised Tony isn't saying let's sign him for another 5 years. Ziggy isn't ready yet.

Don't get your panties in a bunch :)

tony hipchest
10-27-2011, 01:31 AM
whaaa!

im suprised danclooney hasnt left this board in shame and embarrassment from being constantly owned.

Bayz101
10-27-2011, 01:37 AM
whaaa!

im suprised danclooney hasnt left this board in shame and embarrassment from being constantly owned.

Let's take a moment of silence in remembrance of Tim Lumber.

tony hipchest
10-27-2011, 01:38 AM
...and thumper.

amen

Bayz101
10-27-2011, 01:42 AM
...and thumper.

amen

I'm pretty sure thumper has like ten accounts. If not, i'm concerned about the world we live in.

ETL
10-27-2011, 01:44 AM
Ok I need therapy. I know it.

But when I hear stories like that about Aaron Smith, tears of pride well up in my eyes.

In so many ways, I am so jealous of what Smith has - the band of brothers and teammates that have supported him throughout the years - through his personal tragedies and his injury struggles. It was so perfect that he was a Steeler and the Steelers were there for him. I wish I had an ounce of that in my life.

Bayz101
10-27-2011, 01:47 AM
Ok I need therapy. I know it.

But when I hear stories like that about Aaron Smith, tears of pride well up in my eyes.

In so many ways, I am so jealous of what Smith has - the band of brothers and teammates that have supported him throughout the years - through his personal tragedies and his injury struggles. It was so perfect that he was a Steeler and the Steelers were there for him. I wish I had an ounce of that in my life.

The guy deserves every ounce of recognition he gets, and the team that surrounds him deserves just the same. Every time I read stories of how we're the dirtiest defense in football, it makes me sick.

Curtain_of_Steel
10-28-2011, 09:02 AM
No doubt thanks for the service, great player, great guy, has done a lot for Steeler Nation, and he should say thank you back for taking an extra 15mill gift as well.

Steelers typically know when to tap out on a player, this was a costly guy to keep when it was clear he should've been cut this year. Ziggy was no fluke last year anchoring that line. That was a solid oline or cb money we couldve spent.