Keith Smith -- Crusader Raider & Super Fan
El Cucuy is among a number of Oakland Raiders fans who add excitement and delight to attending Raiders games.
Since 1980 Englishman Keith Smith has been a dedicated fan of the Oakland Raiders, which he shares in common with many people globally. His enthusiasm for the team came while visiting his family in California years ago. Seven years later he became a Super Fan and Crusader Raider and a representative of the worldwide Raider Nation.
Although the Raiders' team colors are black and silver, Smith wanted to be different. He wanted to represent both the team and his country.
"I'm the only person in the Oakland Coliseum who wears a red and white Raider costume and I am respected by the Raider Nation because red and white are the colors of England," he says.
Crusader Raider made his 63rd visit to the United States for the What A Fan sports fan conference in 2014 and he has visited over half of the stadiums in the United States and traveled to Spain, Germany and other countries to attend games and collectively support all football comrades.
Smith is a family man and a philanthropist in both the United Kingdom and the United States. Married for eleven years, he has one son and two daughters but his work and love for children doesn't stop at home. He is an advocate for protecting children from being victims of child abuse and he has built his career working full-time with children suffering from autism and adults with learning disabilities.
"If I can make a change by educating people about autism and learning disabilities, it will be a better world for all of us," states Smith. His foundation, Sycamore Trust, aids autistic children and families in East London.
Through his establishment, Smith has connected with over 400 families, supporting them so that the children of their families have resources to healthcare, educational programs, and the ability for their kids to be fully included for life development to carry them from childhood through adulthood.
In the 1980s Smith worked in the United States opening summer camp programs for disabled children. His goal was to educate people about physical and learning disabilities that affect others, provide programs to allow more accessibility for disabled children, and to teach the public how to help others in need.
Today Smith works for a charity raising awareness of autism in East London and volunteers in the United States, assisting adults suffering from drug abuse, the homeless, and families accessing the Ronald McDonald House. He is a proud member of the 66th St. MOB (Make Oakland Better) which supports less fortunate fans.
This season Crusader Raider attended the preseason game in Seattle and will be at the Coliseum for home games versus the Vikings, Packers and Chargers. He will also attend three NFL games at Wembley Stadium in London, totaling over 32,000 air miles.
Despite having ten losing seasons, the Raider Nation stands strong together, whether at games or just helping one another in general. "It's about how you come together and making a difference," says Smith. "We have the biggest fan base in the world and the friendliest," he proudly states. "If you ever need help, a Raider Nation fan will help you."