Community mourns Georgia HS cornerback's death in pre-season game

Aug. 18, 2013 at 10:29 AM

UNION CITY, Ga., Aug. 18 (UPI) -- A Georgia community was mourning the death of a 16-year-old high school football player the medical examiner said died of a neck injury in a pre-season game.

The Fulton County Medical Examiner's Office confirmed Saturday that Deantre Turman of Union City, known as "Tre Tre," a cornerback for the Creekside High School Seminoles, died Friday after he was hurt on the Banneker High School field, WSB-TV, Atlanta, reported.

Family members told the television station Turman, a junior, died doing what he made him happiest.

"That is what made him the happiest. Being the competitor and playing different sports made him happy," said Tarsha Keller, Turman's guardian.

Keller said the Fulton County Coroner's Office confirmed Turman died of fractured third vertebrae. He was pronounced dead at an area hospital.

"Basically he broke his neck," Keller said.

Johnny White, Creekside's football coach from 2009 to 2011, said he was told by a parent of another Creekside player Turman was making what looked to be a routine tackle when he collapsed, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

The 5-foot-11, 164-pound cornerback was considered a top prospect and received a scholarship offer from University of Kentucky in June, sports outlets reported.

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