The story of Greg Bryant is a tragic one, but can we learn anything from his death?
You’ll have to forgive me for such a delayed response as my family also lost a loved one over the past few days. Death is the ultimate equalizer for the human race. It sees no gender or race or bank account or rights and wrongs. Death comes to us all, and it serves as a constant reminder to the living to not just live, but to make the most out of the life you have.
It was an uncle of mine that passed away on Friday. His name was Randy and he finally was overcome by ALS after a five year struggle. His death wasn’t shocking as anyone who knows what ALS can do will tell you, but with death comes a certain amount of emotion and memories that you just can’t shake.
This was the uncle that taught me a lot of lessons as I was growing and did it by just being my friend. Fishing trips, days together, and family gatherings- it was always more like hanging out with a buddy than a family member. For a young person constantly trying to find his place in the world and struggling with inner demons and doubt, the time spent with him seemed to erase any of the negative energy that would weigh me down.
Now, with the funeral just a few days away, I am haunted by the fact that my time spent with him was so small since my days in college. What things in my life could have been different had I just slowed down and expanded that relationship? What if I… what if I?
We don’t know the full details about what happened the other night on interstate 95 in Florida, but anything involving a double shooting is in the category of bad news. Now after seeing this tragedy with Greg Bryant unfold, I can’t help but wonder what could have been done to prevent this from happening.
It would be unfair and unjust to make too many assumptions, but clearly the path that Greg Bryant took over the last few years was never part of his plan coming out of high school as a five star running back with so much potential. After Greg was suspended from Notre Dame and then left Notre Dame due to academic problems, I wondered if his his choice to attend Notre Dame over Oklahoma (a school Bryant was committed to at one time) was a mistake. Was he really prepared for the course load at a school like Notre Dame?
And what about his path after he left Notre Dame? His father, who had played a close role in the events leading Bryant to Notre Dame and keeping Bryant at the school after a rough freshman year, was left in the dark about what his son was doing in attending ASA in Miami. You wonder about his relationship with former Notre Dame assistant coach Tony Alford, and what that really meant to Bryant when Alford left for Ohio State.
When you don’t know a lot of things, and there is a void of information, all you have left are questions. Those questions are even more numerous and pressing and vague when it involves the death of a healthy young person. What could have been done to alter the path that led Greg Bryant to an early death?
This is by no means an article that is suggesting or implying that Bryant was doing anything questionable or illegal. For every action come a reaction, and when it comes to a young person passing away suddenly and under violent circumstances, you can’t help but wonder what small differences could have been made regardless of the big choices, to make sure that this didn’t happen.
Death has a way of making you ask an incredible amount of questions.
Are there lessons to be learned? Without a doubt there most certainly are, but without much information about what, how, and why this happened or who did it, you can’t help but wonder what those lessons even are.