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Southeast Grand Rapids street designated Sekou Smith Way

Sekou Smith Way sign being hung at Auburn Avenue SE in Grand Rapids.
David Limbaugh
Sekou Smith Way sign being hung at Auburn Avenue SE in Grand Rapids.

A southeast Grand Rapids street was designated Sekou Smith Way in honor of the late sports journalist.

“It’s a humbling kind of experience, especially when you grow up on a street and who would ever think that one day it could bear your late brother’s name.”

Misti Stanton is Sekou Smith’s sister. Smith and his siblings grew up on Grand Rapids’ Auburn Avenue. Smith became a beat reporter for the Atlanta Hawks basketball team before joining the NBA as a multimedia reporter and on-screen analyst for two decades. Smith passed away in January 2021 from Covid.

Now, Auburn Avenue between Wealthy Street and Lake Drive is designated as Sekou Smith Way.

Stanton says Smith would be incredibly honored.

“For him to be able to leave this type of legacy is huge and I think he would be so humbled and emotional, but so proud to know that this sign would be here long after us.”

The Grand Rapids City Commission formally approved the commemorative designation of the street on December 5th at the request of Smith’s family.

Stanton says she’s proud of her brother’s legacy and is happy to see it shared with the community he loved to give back to.

“Because when you navigate through the world, you just try to treat people with respect, do the best work you can, be able to provide, but for him to able to leave this type of legacy is huge.”

Dave joined WGVU Public Media in November of 2023 after eighteen years as a Michigan Association of Broadcasters Emmy-nominated photojournalist and editor at Grand Rapids' WOOD TV8 and three years at WEYI TV25 in Flint, Michigan. As a General Assignment Reporter, Dave covers daily news and community events all over West Michigan.
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