Right the wrong, Panthers

17 years ago, in 1999, then Carolina Panther’s wide receiver Rae Carruth took part in the assassination of his girlfriend–Cherica Adams. That’s just the beginning of the tragedy. The real story is that their unborn child survived, but suffered brain damage.

The beautifully written article by Scott Fowler reminded me of all the details. I remember reading it at the time. I wonder how things would have been had this happened today under the microscope of social media. There would have been an outrage, protests. Pressure would have been put on the NFL and the Carolina Panthers.

Adams, 58, says she has never been contacted in an official capacity by the Panthers – although she and Chancellor Lee are major fans of the team and have met several individual Panthers players, including current defensive end Kony Ealy. Neither the club nor the NFL has ever helped her financially, she says.

So what did the Panthers do? Simply cut all ties with the player and their family. With newly born Chancellor Lee Adams. This seems a little odd to me on a couple fronts. The NFL and more importantly, the teams themselves are usually heavily invested in their communities. They usually reach out and help the people that support them. Why not with this? They could have easily set up a trust fund for the boy, who could probably use some help.

I have mixed feelings about Rae Carruth. My own religion preaches forgiveness, but it’s hard to forgive someone who plotted and carried out such a horrible act, simply because he didn’t want the financial burden of another child. I have an easier time forgiving the man who pulled the trigger. The article states that Curruth to this day has not acknowledged any responsibility for the murder.

What is unforgivable is the fact that the Panthers did nothing for Carruth’s son. His story was quietly forgotten. I can see why they would want nothing to do with Rae, who was convicted for hiring someone to kill his pregnant girlfriend. I am appalled and saddened, but I would also like to promote this story at the very least, and perhaps get the Panthers attention. What’s done is done, and cannot be changed. What happens now though, can be changed very simply. It would start with a phone call. Maybe some tears. It would end perhaps with a visit to the facility, or home of Chancellor Lee Adams. Perhaps even a special day down in Charlotte. A sunny Sunday afternoon at Bank of America Stadium. It could be wonderful. Isn’t it time?

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