Busting Barriers and Overcoming Challenges
Written by Gobi Moore on September 5, 2017
Blind since Birth, Son of Legendary Singer O.C. Smith is Busting Barriers:
Robert F. Smith Overcomes Challenges by Challenging Others
As the son of a Grammy Award winning singer, O.C. Smith, (Little Green Apples), Robert F. Smith was born into a privileged life. But, he learned growing up that life can throw you curve-balls and you must be ready to adapt to each and every pitch, like being blind since birth.
Despite the many highs and lows life threw at him, Robert eventually realized how blessed he was. And, to show the world his gratitude, Robert created the Little Green Apples Project, which seeks to inspire a million acts of intentional kindness. His mission: donate a percentage of profits from his new Toss’n Towel™ game to those most in need. A second goal: send 10,000 Toss’n Towel games to veterans, deployed military, boys and girls clubs and senior centers through his current campaign on Indiegogo.
Robert confidently says he sees through other people’s eyes.
“I’ve been blind since birth, but it hasn’t slowed me down one bit. In fact, it’s inspired me to take on more challenges every day. Like learning to throw a baseball 60’6″ to home plate or how to drive a race car! After this, who knows – I may challenge myself to parachute out of an airplane.
Robert is a singer and businessman who feels no obstacle is too big to overcome. As a way to bring attention to his project, Robert is on a mission to be the first blind man to throw out the ceremonial pitch and sing the national anthem at every professional ballpark in America.
He recently did just that at McCoy Stadium, home of the Pawtucket Red Sox, the Triple A farm team of the Boston Red Sox. Last year, Robert sang and tossed the first pitch at an Oakland A’s home game, and opened the season throwing out the ceremonial ball at the Iowa movie site of Field of Dreams.
Robert is energy personified. He’s working on an all-star singing tour to start this fall, learning to drive a race car through an obstacle course and challenging business and entertainment celebrities to a “blind pitch-off” to benefit charities.
“Performing an act of kindness can be quite simple,” he says. “Help someone cross the street. Ask your neighbors how their family is doing. Take some magazines to a senior center or thank a veteran for their service. It adds up and makes us all better people.”
It would be easy to hear Robert’s story and feel empathy. But, the Long Beach native will have none of that. He’s too busy reaching out to friends and strangers alike, challenging them to be the best they can be.
“Even a blind man can see that one act of legitimate kindness makes the world a better place.”
NOTE: Current versions of the Toss’n Towel game include the Original Little Green Apples, Toss’n Reef, and Toss’n Baseball. Coming next year: Toss’n Football, Basketballand Soccer editions. A portion of net proceeds from Robert’s Toss’n Towel go to supportBoys and Girls Clubs of America (select regions), Pitch In For Baseball and the National Alliance of Resident Services in Affordable and Assisted Housing (NAR-SAAH).
- Published on July 14, 2016
President of HOWARD RUBEN Communications