facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Website: Dead Manti Te'o girlfriend a hoax

Jan. 16, 2013 at 8:05 PM   |   Comments

SOUTH BEND, Ind., Jan. 16 (UPI) -- Inspiring stories about a girlfriend of Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o who died of leukemia were part of a hoax, Deadspin.com reported Wednesday.

The website said the girlfriend -- Lennay Kekua -- never existed even as the national sports media wrote of how she inspired the Heisman Trophy candidate to feats of glory as the Fighting Irish completed an undefeated regular season.

Rather, Deadspin.com said accounts of how the two met at Stanford University in 2008, later became a couple and her subsequent death in September -- only days after the death of Te'o's grandmother -- were fictional.

Citing extensive interviews, the website reported the girlfriend was an online persona created by Te'o's friend Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, the pastor of a Palmdale, Calif., church, and intimated the linebacker may have been in on the deception.

Te'o issued a statement Wednesday contending he was the victim of an elaborate hoax.

"To realize that I was the victim of what was apparently someone's sick joke and constant lies was, and is, painful and humiliating," he said.

"It further pains me that the grief I felt and the sympathies expressed to me at the time of my grandmother's death in September were in any way deepened by what I believed to be another significant loss in my life," he added.

© 2013 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Featured UPI Collection
trending
Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Most Popular
1
Arkansas State player fakes death on-field to distract defense, play called 'fainting goat' Arkansas State player fakes death on-field to distract defense, play called 'fainting goat'
2
NFL Players Association appeals Ray Rice's indefinite suspension NFL Players Association appeals Ray Rice's indefinite suspension
3
Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton calls on Vikings to suspend Adrian Peterson indefinitely Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton calls on Vikings to suspend Adrian Peterson indefinitely
4
Vikings exempt Adrian Peterson until child abuse allegations resolved, not suspended but can't play Vikings exempt Adrian Peterson until child abuse allegations resolved, not suspended but can't play
5
Adrian Peterson facing more child abuse allegations after details about 2013 incident come out Adrian Peterson facing more child abuse allegations after details about 2013 incident come out
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback