Junior Seau's suicide is not the first by an NFL player which brings the subject of brain injuries in this contact sport to the headlines once again. The family of the late Junior Seau has agreed to allow their much-loved family member's brain to undergo research as part of an ongoing study of brain injuries among the NFL players.
Allowing Seau's brain to go under the microscope might not only supply the family with some answers to what was going on with this former football star, but it could help others in the future. Seau was all about helping others as shown with his massive committment to community service, so this would go along with his legacy.
San Diego Chargers Chaplin Shawn Mitchell said that the family came to this decision almost immediately upon his death, but they waited for a bit to make sure their decision wasn't an emotional one. They've agreed to this brain study "to help other individuals down the road," according to Mitchell.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Seau's suicide holds similarities to former Chicago Bear's player Dave Duerson, who also died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest last year. Duerson left a suicide note that asked his family to give his brain to the Boston University School of Medicine where they were conducting a study on brain injuries in the NFL.
The findings from Duerson's research showed he was suffering from a neurodegenerative disease linked to concussions and this played a role in triggering the depression he was suffering from. While the researchers at Boston University are the most likely candidates to receive Seau's brain for research, the decision on who will do the brain study hasn't been made yet.