Confused about his death, Evan Murray’s friends are certain: ‘We loved the kid’

27 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Confused about his death, Evan Murray’s friends are certain: ‘We loved the kid’.

A New Jersey high school football player tried to assure his teammates he would be OK, mustering a brave attempt at a thumbs-up as he was lifted onto a gurney. Warren Hills High School senior quarterback Evan Murray, 17, died after taking a hit to the chest in a Friday night football game in New Jersey against Summit High School. Evan Murray’s teammates completed the Friday game after the star quarterback was injured on the field — only to later learn that their team leader died. “He tried giving a thumbs-up to the rest of the team, and all of us cheered,” said Kaitlin Bell, 16, a junior varsity cheerleader at Warren Hills Regional High School. Warren County Prosecutor Richard Burke said an autopsy is scheduled for Saturday afternoon. “On behalf of Coach Kostibos, Principal Sears, Athletic Director Lockhart, the Summit athletic department and our entire community, I offer my heartfelt condolences to the Murray family and the Warren Hills community for the loss of their son, teammate and friend, Evan Murray,” Summit Superintendent June Chang said in the statement. “The loss of someone so young and so suddenly is tragic and we stand together with the Warren Hills community during this time of grief.” In a letter addressed to the Summit community, Chang said he, Kostibos, Lockhart and Director of Guidance Lauren Kaplan met with the team on Saturday morning, allowing coaches and players to speak, as well as providing information on support services. Teammates and witnesses said Murray took a hit in the backfield during the second quarter of Friday night’s game against visiting Summit High and walked off the field with the help of his teammates.

Warren Hills also offered a statement on Murray’s death, as district interim Superintendent Gary Bowen offered condolences and thanked everyone for their support. Added junior defensive end Bailey Lieberman, who sat out the game with an injury: “I’m not sure if it was that last hit on him that actually did the damage, or previous plays. We didn’t expect anything would happen.” Taylor Coughlin, a 16-year-old junior at the school, told The (Easton) Express-Times that she had first met Murray in the seventh grade. She said he was “an amazing student and an amazing athlete.” Coughlin said many students first learned of Murray’s injury and death through social media postings. “A lot of people were in disbelief and didn’t want to believe it,” she said. When asked about Murray following the game, wide receiver and Michigan commit Ahmir Mitchell said he had not heard about the situation, but understood the its gravity. “First thing rest in peace to him and all my heart and emotion goes out to his family.

Chris Christie and the New York Jets football team were among dozens of people and groups from around the country who posted condolences via social media Saturday. Officials didn’t reveal the time of death, but word of the tragedy leaked into social media in the early morning hours Saturday, sparking grief and disbelief. Added Sevian Frangipane, a long-time friend of Murray’s: ““I’m feeling a lot of confusion right now. (I) don’t know how God could take away from us someone so undeserving of this.

What I remember most was how he changed every room he was in, every program he was a part of and every life he was involved in.” In a preseason story about Murray’s leadership on the football team, Warren Hills coach Larry Dubiel talked about how Murray was strictly a one-way player. According to his football bio, Murray’s favorite food was Chipotle and he had plans to attend a four-year college. “Be successful” was his aspiration.

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