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With head-injury awareness up, Waters has a legacy of another kind in hometown February 12, 2010

Posted by intebic in Uncategorized.
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By RICH HOFMANN
Philadelphia Daily News

BELLE GLADE, Fla. — It is called Foreverglades Cemetery. Wordplay seems out of place at a burial ground, but there you have it. This is where Andre Waters rests, in Plot No. 118.

“Waters?” asks the man behind the desk in the office, reaching for a file drawer. “How many years ago?”

“Three.”

“Three? It doesn’t seem that long,” says a woman working on the other side of the room. She stands up.

“I’ll take him out,” she tells her co-worker. “You know, Andre was my classmate. It was all so sad.”

Waters took his own life in November 2006. Most people assumed his depression was linked to his inability to gain entry as an NFL coach after his career as a safety with the Eagles and Arizona Cardinals ended in the mid-’90s. He had coached some in college but could never hook on in the NFL. He had no coaching mentor, and it just never worked out. It is wrong to try to be a mind reader, but some thought that might have been the issue – that and the physical pain he endured following a brutal career. But there was no way to know.

The family came here for the burial. It is a small cemetery. This is farm country; in the distance, several columns of black smoke rise above sugar cane fields, where the detritus is being burned off to facilitate future growth. In the cemetery, there is a mausoleum, and then the rest of the grave markers are all flat to the ground. Bouquets of flowers spring from the landscape, here and there.

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