Tragic news from the NFL … former San Diego Charger great and 12 time Pro-Bowler Junior Seau dead at the age of 43. According to police accounts, Seau was found unconscious by his girl friend with a gun shot wound to his chest. Life saving efforts were unsuccessful. It is believed that Junior Seau’s death was a suicide as a gun was found near his body; however, no note was found. Junior Seau attended USC and played 20 seasons in the NFL with the San Diego Chargers, Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots. When Seau becomes eligible, he will most certainly be a first ballot NFL Hall of Famer. What a shame.
Junior Seau: 1969 – 2012, Rest in Peace
OCEANSIDE, Calif. — Junior Seau, a homegrown superstar who was the fist-pumping, emotional leader of the San Diego Chargers for 13 years, was found shot to death at his home Wednesday morning. He was 43.
Police Chief Frank McCoy said Seau’s girlfriend reported finding him unconscious with a gunshot wound to the chest and lifesaving efforts were unsuccessful. A gun was found near him, McCoy said, and police were investigating the possibility that Seau’s death was a suicide. Police said no suicide note was found and they didn’t immediately know to whom the gun was registered.
Sadly, Seau could handle 20 years in the NFL and became a larger than life icon in the San Diego area as a local boy made good. However, tragically Junior Seau’s death shows an continued alarming trend of ex-NFL player who have committed suicide.
Former Charger GM Bobby Bethard who drafted Seau out of USC in1990 remembers the Super Charger.
“It’s a sad thing. It’s hard to understand,” said Bobby Beathard, who as Chargers general manager took Seau out of Southern California with the fifth pick overall in the 1990 draft. “He was really just a great guy. If you drew up a player you’d love to have the opportunity to draft and have on the team and as a teammate, Junior and Rodney (Harrison), they’d be the kind of guys you’d like to have.”Watch former teammate and ESPN analyst Marcellus Wiley’s tearful remembrance of Junior Seau (VIDEO).
The Washington Post has numerous remarks of those who played with Seau as they remember him. Also some eye opening stats of many other players who have died before the age of 45.
Several former NFL players have died unexpectedly in recent months. Last month, authorities in Richmond told Fox that former Atlanta Falcons safety Ray Easterling’s death had been ruled a suicide. Easterling was among the former NFL players involved in concussion-related litigation against the league.
Seau was not known to be involved in any of the concussion-related lawsuits against the NFL. He survived a 100-foot fall down a cliff in his car in October 2010, a few hours after being arrested in a domestic incident. He was hospitalized but reportedly suffered only minor injuries and police said it was believed he fell asleep at the wheel.
He is the eighth member of the 1994 Chargers team, which reached the Super Bowl, to die before age 45. The others are Chris Mims, David Griggs, Rodney Culver, Lew Bush, Doug Miller, Curtis Whitley and Shawn Lee.
Junior Seau was a joy to watch on the field and always came across as an ultimate leader as he inspired so many others. He was so full of life on the field, it is so tragic that he could not do the same off. Next stop Canton and the Football Hall of Fame.
REST IN PEACE JUNIOR SEAU.