Granger Smith’s wife Amber says she forgives those who blame her for three-year-old son’s death

Amber and Granger Smith’s three-year-old son died in 2019 drowning accident

Chelsea Ritschel
New York
Wednesday 06 July 2022 16:17 BST
Amber Smith says she forgives those who send her messages about son’s death
Amber Smith says she forgives those who send her messages about son’s death (Getty Images)

Support truly
independent journalism

Our mission is to deliver unbiased, fact-based reporting that holds power to account and exposes the truth.

Whether $5 or $50, every contribution counts.

Support us to deliver journalism without an agenda.

Louise Thomas

Louise Thomas


Amber Smith has shared some of the messages she receives from people criticising her for the death of her three-year-old son while explaining why she “forgives” those who blame her.

In June 2019, Amber and her husband, country music singer Granger Smith, lost their son River Kelly in a drowning accident.

On Monday, Amber revealed on her Instagram Stories in a since-expired post that she still receives messages criticising her parenting, with the actor sharing a screenshot of a recent comment that she left on Instagram, as well as the response she received from another Instagram user calling her “truly disgusting”.

In her comment, Amber shared her support for another family who appeared to have suffered a loss. “All of us mamas who know this pain have been praying so hard for your family,” she wrote. “We are all rallying around you and are here for you. Light will come from the dark. He is working. Bless you for blessing others in your deepest hurt. Sending all our love.”

Amber’s comment was met with a response from another Instagram user, who claimed that the actor’s comment made them “so mad”.

“Why would you be such irresponsible parents?! Teach babies to swim, fence the pool, PROTECT your children!” the user continued. “This is your fault, you KILLED your kid. Truly disgusting.”

On her Instagram Stories, where Amber shared a screenshot of the exchange, she responded with a scripture before addressing those who send the hurtful messages.

“James 3:6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. But no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison,” Amber wrote.

The 40 year old, who also shares sons Lincoln, eight, and Maverick, one, and daughter London, 10, with Granger, then revealed that she “can’t fault” the people who send the messages, but that it’s taken her three years to learn not to let them hurt her.

“I can’t fault these people. We live in a fallen world. It’s taken me three years to not let these comments hurt me, but I forgive them. I am rooted in Jesus,” she wrote.

Amber’s response to the messages comes after she and Granger opened up about the ongoing guilt and responsibility they feel over their son’s death while speaking to CBS This Morning in March 2021.

“I don’t think I will ever not have that feeling of responsibility and guilt. I feel like somebody has to be responsible, and it was me,” Granger said at the time. “As a parent, I look back on that day and there’s a million things I could have done just a little bit different. And it would have been a different outcome.”

Amber also spoke of the guilt she feels, while revealing that she’s never “blamed” her husband. “I feel the same responsibility, because River’s my son. I never once have felt blame for [Granger],” she said. “And I hate that he carries that every day.”

The couple has also been outspoken about their ongoing grief on Instagram, with Amber sharing a family photo taken with the couple’s newest addition in September 2021 while acknowledging that they will “forever be a family of six”.

“We will forever be a family of six, although you will only see five in the photos. I so miss our fiery red head and the silly faces he used to make next to ours, but in a way, I feel that Maverick was closer to Him than all of us before he came into our lives, so we still feel him so near,” she wrote.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in