Found March 11, 2012 on Bleed Black & Gold:

Aaron Smith put out a letter today in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette saying thank you for his years here in Pittsburgh.  I can not say enough about how well this was written so I will let the letter speak for itself.

Dear Steelers Fans,

As of today, I am no longer a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers. I leave the field and Steelers with no regrets, and am grateful to have played for such a tremendous organization. I feel truly blessed to have spent my entire professional career in the best town, playing for the most loyal fans who have loved and supported myself and my family.

The last 13 years of our lives have been special because of the people who cheered me on, and I am truly fortunate to have been a part of the Steelers, the City of Pittsburgh and the Steelers Nation. You have opened your arms and your hearts to us as a family and we will never forget that. Your support, enthusiasm, love and dedication are gifts I will carry with me my entire life.

I may no longer be on the Steelers active roster, but I will always be a Steeler and will never forget the people who made it all worthwhile — the fans, the Rooneys, the front office, the equipment guys and trainers, my teammates and family. Thank you for supporting me over the last 13 years, and I hope you will support me in whatever future path life will take me on.

We plan on making Pittsburgh our home and I will endeavor for the rest of my days to find a way to thank each and every one of you personally for all that you have done and meant for me and my family. You cheered for me for 13 years and now I cheer for you for the rest of my life. You will always be in my heart, thoughts and prayers. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for allowing me to have the job of a lifetime. You will always be in my heart.

Your friend always,

Aaron Smith and Family, No. 91

Smith sounds like he is about to head into retirement.  He does not want a big show about it though.  This may have been his retirement speech.  Smith shows so much class in this letter and is truly one of the good guys that we have come to know in Steelers Nation.

Smith has always been my favorite player to watch.  He was under rated his entire career until he missed some games and then someone noticed.  Late in his career he finally got his due.  My respect for Smith and the way he went about his business is undenied.  Aaron is one of those players you can not help but cheer for.  I even went as far as naming my son Aaron.  Do not tell my wife that, she thinks she picked the name.  After reading this letter though it confirms that I made a good choice.

You are a class act Aaron Smith.  You will be missed.  Thank you for all the memories and good luck the rest of your life.

THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
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