Tragedy struck Wednesday when former NFL player, Adam Philips, shot and killed five people, before ultimately taking his own life.
Dr. Robert Lesslie, his wife Barbara, two of their young grandchildren (Adah and Noah), and James Lewis were among the six victims that lost their lives. The sixth victim was taken to the hospital with gunshot wounds.
The shootings occurred in Rock Hill, South Carolina, where Dr. Lesslie had been practicing medicine since 1981. Philips used a 45. caliber handgun, which he later used on himself. He was 32-years old.
In an interview on Friday, Representative Ralph Norman said Dr. Lesslie “was treating Philips” and took away his medication.
“My understanding, he was treating him and stopped giving him medicine, and that’s what triggered the killings, from what I understand,” Rep. Norman said, citing statements from local law enforcement.
Philips’s family gave doctors the “ok” to examine his brain for chronic traumatic encephalopathy. A brain condition that describes brain degeneration likely caused by repeated head traumas.
Adam Philips Father Says “The Football Messed Him Up”
While doctors continue their investigation, Adam Philip’s family are certain that repeated head trauma was a major factor in his murder-suicide.
During his NFL run as a defensive back, Philips suffered numerous injures, many of them related to head trauma. In 2012, Philips suffered two concussions within the span of three games.
“I think the football messed him up,” Alonzo Adams, Philips’s father, told reporters at WCNC.
The New York Institute of Technology’s Center for Sports Medicine director Dr. Hallie Zwibel shares Adam’s opinion.
He could have been taking hits all the time and only wound up with only one or two concussions, but the cumulative hits he has taken are so many that it could have made him develop degenerative brain disease,” Dr.Zwibel said.
“It really affects people to an enormous degree in their ability to enjoy relationships and friendships, to really function in the world,” he added.
Last Sunday, The Game Haus discussed the dangers of brain damage with NFL players, citing two studies of CTE within defensive NFL players after taking their own lives.
Adams sends his condolences to the victims involved in the tragedy.
“From Our Haus to Yours