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UPDATE September 21, 2017:
We brought you the story (below) of Aaron Hernandez’s apparent suidicide back in April and the questions about his brain health, specifically Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy or CTE. At the request of Hernandez’ family, Dr. Ann McKee—Professor of Pathology and Neurology at Boston University School of Medicine, Director of BU’s CTE Center and Chief of Neuropathology at the VA-BU-CLF Brain Bank—conducted a neuropathologic examination of Hernandez’ brain.
The results indicate Hernandez had CTE stage 3/4.
Hernandez began playing tackle football at a young age. Doctors are saying that his brain results show the worst case of CTE they have seen in a brain of a player his age (27 years old, at the time of his death).
— Michael Kasdan (@michaelkasdan) September 22, 2017
Aaron Hernandez’s brain will be released to Boston University’s Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) center, now that his death has officially been ruled a suicide. According to NBC News, attorney’s for the Hernandez family had accused the district attorney’s office of “illegally” withholding it.
While controversial, because Hernandez was serving a prison sentence for murder, CTE advocates point out that damage to the brain’s frontal lobe can affect thinking, decision-making, personality, self-awareness, and reasoning. Hernandez becomes one of the most high-profile NFL players to have his brain studied for CTE, since Junior Seau.
“I see most everyone jumping on the “he deserved what he got” train as far as Hernandez goes. I’m not. I hope his family allows them to use his brain for CTE research. My completely uneducated guess is that there is significant damage and that he suffered from the effects of years of violent hits and repeated undiagnosed concussions. Does that excuse his actions? No. But life isn’t black and white. We exist in the grey area, where absolutes are rare and things are not always what they seem. From someone who has often considered suicide as a viable option, it’s not something a healthy mind ponders. To celebrate his death is not only a shame, but shows a shocking lack of humanity.” — Shawn Henfling
“For those of us who live with brain injury we must also live with the shame of the bad decisions we make and there’s no way for us to separate our damaged brain from our day to day life. CTE robs one of their sanity. It’s a sad reality. Not only do I believe he had it based on number of years played, age he started, position, possible number of subconcussive hits and symptoms. I would estimate he had Stage III and had issues as far back high school with symptoms of brain damage.” — Kimberly Archie
— NFLCSFacts (@NFLObjectors) April 20, 2017
— Michael Kasdan (@michaelkasdan) April 21, 2017
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Former NFL star Aaron Hernandez Found Dead in Cell Early Wednesday Morning After an Apparent Suicide
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