Athletes Gone Too Soon

Steven Kertis, Reporter

Steven Kertis

We all fall in love with athletes, but when that athlete dies in a tragic accident, the sports world goes into a state of shock and sadness. Too many people have been lost in the realm of sports that had significantly bright futures.

Sean Taylor was a premier safety in the NFL for the Washington Commanders known for his speed and hard hits upon opposing players. Taylor was selected into the 2006 Pro Bowl. On Nov 26, 2007, Taylor was shot by intruders who were trying to break into his home. He died the next day.

This tragic event led to a major outpouring in the Washington D.C and the Miami community.

On Dec 2, 2007, the Commanders lined up on defense with ten guys on the field in tribute to Taylor against the Buffalo Bills.

NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt is one of three drivers that has seven championships. He was nicknamed “The Intimidator” for his aggressive style of racing.  He has totaled 76 wins in his career which is eighth on all time win list.

On the final lap of the 2001 Daytona 500, Earnhardt was protecting his two teammates (Michael Waltrip, and Dale Earnhardt Jr) in front of him by keeping the rest of the cars behind him in an incredible display of defensive driving.

On the third and fourth turns, Sterling Marlin got inside of Earnhardt. Earnhardt tried to block but he got turned to the apron. He tries to save it but overcorrects the car and crashes into the wall head on at 16o mph. Ken Schrader, the other guy who was involved in the wreck, walked over to Earnhardt’s car and signaled for medical crews to get there faster because he wasn’t responding.

Dale Earnhardt would never regain consciousness as he passed away at Halifax Medical Center at 5:16 PM eastern standard time.

Other athletes that have tragically passed away are Los Angeles Pitcher, Tyler Skaggs, Philadelphia Eagles defensive end Jerome Brown, Pittsburgh Pirates batter, Roberto Clemente, New York Yankees legend, Lou Gehrig, legendary golfer Payne Stewart and Kansas City Chiefs legendary defensive end Derrick Thomas.