Trey Smith // Preble Shawnee Athletics
Freshman Trey Smith had everything going for him. He was the leading scorer for last year’s junior high basketball team. He joined the varsity football team this fall – ranked as Ohio’s number one freshman wide receiver and number four in the nation to begin the season (MaxPreps.com). Through all this, he displayed a humble attitude, hoping to be a positive role model. Then, things took a drastic turn.
Trey was running drills in practice when he took a hit, fell back and hit his head on the field. Reid athletic trainer Kalette Hittle rushed to his side, checking his symptoms. Trey was out of commission.
“Kalette called to let us know he had a mild concussion,” said Trey’s mother, Michele. “A week later she did the concussion test again and slowly started adding back activities.”
Trey was able to play one game, and then started for his first high school homecoming game. Late in the third quarter, he took another hard hit. Kalette and Reid orthopedic surgeon Dr. Gregory Woods were immediately at his side.
“Trey had tingling in his right arm. They were having trouble getting pulses,” Michele said. “Dr. Woods said he would feel better if he had a scan.”
Michele is a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and her husband, Larry, is a former Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). Other parents began asking them why they didn’t go down from the stands to check on Trey. “I knew whatever was going on, he was safe with Kalette. I was watching her reactions, and I completely trust her judgment.”
As a safety precaution, Trey went by helicopter to the hospital that night. His concussion was severe, but with help and time he would recover.
“I can’t really remember much from that day,” Trey said. “Originally, he did not remember the day before either,” Michele said.
“So far this year, Kalette has been three for three with accurate assessments,” said athletic director Jason Crider.
“She knows what she is doing, and everybody likes her,” said Trey. “Even for preseason practices, she would come out to watch us and make sure everything was okay.”
Trey was out of school for a while, and Kalette continued to check on him and touch base with Michele and Larry. Now that Trey is back, she continues regular assessments and watches from the sidelines for basketball.
Though Trey is only a freshman, he is already planning for his future, hoping to become a high school reading teacher someday. “I want to be a role model,” he said. Some believe he already is one.