Late deputy’s family surprised with Dolphins memorabilia
by Robert Joseph Baker | May 23, 2016 4:02 pm
A late Clarendon County Sheriff’s deputy’s family got quite the surprise earlier this month.
Tonia Mallett-Smith and two of her and the late Holmes Smith’s children entered the Clarendon County Sheriff’s Office to find themselves inundated with memorabilia from the Miami Dolphins.
“That was Holmes’ favorite team,” Mallett-Smith said. “He was a diehard fan. He was a true Dolphin fanatic.”
Smith was killed in November 2014 in a vehicle wreck while on duty.
Clarendon County Sheriff Randy Garrett said that he and Maj. Kipp Coker and other deputies were able to get the memorabilia after starting a friendship with the sheriff of Dade County in Florida.
“We had a suspect shoot two people here, and then he ran down to Florida,” Garrett said. “The sheriff there and I became good friends. When Holmes passed, he got a letter sent from the head coach of the Dolphins. And he said he would try to get some memorabilia.”
Garrett said the sheriff continued to get sidelined every time he asked for the promised materials.
“Finally, he called (two weeks ago) and we met him halfway,” Garrett said. “I was surprised at all the stuff.”
The materials covered an entire table in the Sheriff’s Office and included beer steins, plates, cups, a wreath, matryoshka dolls and wall hangings.
“We were very surprised,” Mallett-Smith said. “I was really excited about all the wonderful things they sent to us. The boys are still talking about it. We will definitely display some of them in our home.”
Mallett-Smith said “football season has not been the same without Holmes.”
“He loved the Dolphins. It just hasn’t been the same,” she said.