Evan Murray, the 17-year-old quarterback for Warren Hills Regional High School in New Jersey, died after he took a hard hit during a football game Friday night against Summit High School. The hit that Evan Murray took occurred shortly before halftime. Fans in attendance stated that after the hit, Murray was able to stand and walk off the field without any assistance. Soon after, Evan collapsed on the sidelines. Kaitlin Bell, a junior varsity cheerleader for Warren Hills Regional High School, commented on the tragedy.
“He tried giving a thumbs-up to the rest of the team, and all of us cheered. Our coach was telling us he was going to be all right. We didn’t expect anything would happen.”
When news of Evan Murray’s death was reported, students, staff, and the community were shocked and in disbelief. A student of Warren Hills Regional High School, Taylor Coughlin, claimed that news of Evan’s death was first learned by students due to postings on social media.
A memorial was held on Saturday in honor of Evan at the football field in which Murray was the starting quarterback for three years. In attendance were family, friends, teammates, and community members. A statement was given by interim Superintendent Gary Bowen.
“We are deeply saddened and sincerely appreciate the support and caring of our close-knit greater Warren Hills community.”
Social media was flooded with notes of condolences.
My deepest condolences go out to Evan Murray’s family, friends and the Warren Hills Regional High School community in New Jersey.
— Trent Cole (@Pro_Hunt58) September 27, 2015
I want to send out my prayers and condolences to the family of Evan Murray. Sad day in NJ. #bless
— Plaxico Burress (@plaxicoburress) September 26, 2015
Our deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of Evan Murray.
— New York Jets (@nyjets) September 26, 2015
Evan Murray’s cause of death is still unknown. Because the circumstances surrounding Murray’s death remain unknown, the Warren County Prosecutor’s Office has launched an investigation into the sudden death of Murray.
On average, 12 deaths occur each year among high school and college football players while playing football. The National Center for Catastrophic Sports Injury Research conducted a 20-year study from July 1990 to June 2010 in which 243 high school and college football players died. Out of the 243 deaths, 203 of them were high school football players. The research went on to show that 100 of the deaths were due to an underlying heart condition, 62 deaths due to brain injuries, and 38 deaths due to heat-related illnesses.
An autopsy report for Evan Murray’s death will answer the question about how he died. It won’t, however, make it any easier on his family, friends, and teammates who are still trying to process the shock of what they saw happen on Friday night.
[Image via Lehighvalleylive.com]