Andy dating in the dark


All roomed together in a house across the street from Hinkle.Leyden had been Andrew’s friend since their days at Covenant Christian, and he teased the young couple when they began dating. Samantha said she doesn’t like to be “mother henned,” and can’t describe how they do it.Late in his life, they spoke about what comes next. Besides Project 44, Butler has established a scholarship in Andrew’s name.Samantha didn’t cite specifics but said:“When I think about our last conversations, there was just so much love. I love you so much.’ That just always sticks with me, knowing how loved I was. Samantha favors the university taking one more step by retiring his jersey number.“I know he will never be forgotten,” Samantha said.

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She accompanied his mother, Lisa Roeder, and stepfather, Craig Roeder, to tournaments around the country last summer: Atlanta, New York, Las Vegas. The athletic department has advised her she is welcome any time.

“That is something that I hold onto every day.”Samantha Smith walks through the hall, passing historic photos, at Butler University's Hinkle Fieldhouse, Monday, January 2, 2017, thinking of a year without her husband Andrew.

Three of Andrew's close friends have been a private, and important, source of support for Samantha: former Butler soccer players Blake Leyden, Jared Isenthal and Jordan Burt.

Then on the flip side of that, toward the end, how deteriorated he had become. It’s much more painful not to have to have basketball in my life than to just walk away from it.”One of her first trips of 2016 was to the home of Brad Stevens, the former Butler coach, and his wife, Tracy.

Stevens, the Boston Celtics coach, was close to Andrew and spoke at the memorial service.

Besides basketball trips, travels included backpacking in Utah and a stop in Houston for the Final Four, where she accepted the U. Basketball Writers Association’s Most Courageous Award on behalf of herself and Andrew.

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