Earlier this year Brian Urlacher was devastated by the shocking news that his mother, Lavoyda Lenard, passed away. Before the Chicago Bears took on the Philadelphia Eagles last night, the star linebacker sat down with ESPN’s Rachel Nichols to talk about his mother’s death and how his team, coaches, and the NFL have supported him through this tough time.
“The support we received was unreal… I got some actual hand-written letters from some players. I couldn’t tell you the last time I wrote a letter, to just sit down and write on a card to another player… and some of the guys were in our division so that was really cool. I didn’t realize it would have this big of an effect, but it was really cool to see that kind of support.”
Lavoyda Lenard passed away at the age of 51 on September 12th. ESPN reports that Urlacher still hasn’t cancelled her cellphone because he likes calling her phone to hear her voice on voice mail.
“I still have her number in there. We still have her voice mail set up on her phone. We haven’t canceled her phone yet so if we want to call and listen to her voice we can do that.”
Urlacher said that he doesn’t know exactly what killed his mother, but admits that she wasn’t in good health at the time of her death.
“She wasn’t in great health… My mom smoked since she was 14 until she was 51 so that probably didn’t help her situation any, but we’re still waiting to find out what exactly happened.”
Urlacher’s mother was laid to rest the day before the Chicago Bears played the New Orleans Saints. Despite the tight schedule, Urlacher said that many of his teammates flew down to New Mexico to attend the funeral.
“It says what kind of teammates they are and friends…. Those guys on their own dime, some of them chartered planes to come down … it’s not easy to get to my hometown where the funeral was.”
Would you be able to return to work the day after burying your mother?