It’s always a sad situation when a mother has to bury any of her children; especially a son who’s been through so many trials and tribulations, yet still was able to succeed in life. Unfortunately this is exactly what Carolyn Lee and David Henry had to do. Their son, Chris Henry, an NFL football player for the Cincinnati Bengals, died from injures suffered as a result of falling out of the back of a moving pickup truck during a domestic dispute with his fiancée, Lolieni Tonga.
Henry, a native of Belle Chasse, Louisiana south of New Orleans, was only 26 years old when he succumbed to his injuries.
The Chris Henry that the media will portray would be that he was a very talented receiver who had a history of off-field problems, however, his teammates would paint a slightly different picture of their fallen comrade.
One teammate said: “People thought he was a bad guy, but he had a big heart.” This certainly was a known fact amongst his family as he re-dedicated himself to his fiancée and their three children. He began to see that his poor decisions not only would affect him, but also those that he loved the most.
After being suspended by the NFL commissioner in 2007 for multiple off field infractions, including arrests during a five-year NFL career, he was widely known as a highly talented player whose potential was being limited by his constant episodes of being on the wrong side of the law. Chris and the popularly known former NFL cornerback, Adam “Pacman” Jones were amongst the NFL poster children for the introduction of a very strict personal conduct policy.
As so many of his teammates had suggested, Chris started to get his life back on track and he was also determined to leave behind his troubled past. One of his teammates and closest friends was quoted as saying: “He was doing everything right.” Tragically and rather unfortunately for the three children that are now left without a father, something went terribly wrong and his efforts were cut short. Sometimes the trials and tribulations of one man can result in a positive life-changing experience for another. Let’s hope that, for the sake of our youth, this message holds true.