Family Reacts To Death Of Tabor College Football Player

By: Parrish Alleman Email
By: Parrish Alleman Email

Brandon Brown Relief Fund:

Emprise Bank

C/O the Brandon Brown Relief Fund

104 East Grand Ave.

Hillsboro, KS 67063


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UPDATE: Sunday, September 23, 2012

Tabor College football player Brandon Brown died just after 10 p.m. Saturday, six days after McPherson police who were called out to a home for a noise complaint found Brandon severely injured.

KAKE News spoke with Brown's family who says it's a miracle he was able to hold on long enough for them to say goodbye.

Brown's family all live in California, where's he's originally from. After Brown was found beaten, his family was told he would only live a few hours. But they say Brown has always been strong.

When the 26-year-old was offered a scholarship to Tabor College, his family says it wasn't just a chance to complete his education but also a chance to do what he loves - play football.

"Brandon is a sports nut,” Brown's great-aunt, Gretchen Garner-Easter said.

Just six weeks after moving to Hillsboro, Brown was found unresponsive and severely injured near a home in McPherson. His mother Ronda Holland, who lives in California, says she got the call early Sunday morning.

"When the nurse told me that they had Brandon and said that he had two hours to live, I was just devastated,” Holland said.

Holland says she asked the nurse for a favor - to put the phone next to Brown's ear.

"I told him 'Hang on baby, I’m on my way. Hang on, I am on my way. Don't you leave here until I get there.' And they were sure that we weren't going to make it,” Holland said.

But they did make it and Brown held on for six more days - enough time for most of his family to fly in and say goodbye.

"I'm thankful to him for that,” Brown's father, Craig Brown said.

"I needed to hold his hand, I needed to rub him, I needed to sing to him, I needed him to know that it was me. Because I needed to release him, I needed to let him know that everything was going to be OK,” Holland said.

Brown's family never got to visit him while he was a student at Tabor College, but they did get the chance to see the campus the day after he died. They tell us they quickly learned that in the short time he spent at the school, Brown was loved.

"We walked in and there were kids in the cafeteria just visibly crying and at one point we stopped crying because we started to cry for them,” Garner-Easter said.

"It is just wonderful how much love they have been pouring our way,” Holland said.

UPDATE: Saturday, September 22, 2012

The family of Brandon Brown, the Tabor College football player who was injured in a beating in McPherson Sept. 16, tells KAKE News that he has passed away.

Brown, 26, died at a Wichita hospital at 10:16 p.m. Saturday.

Brown, a southern California native, had recently moved to Hillsboro, Kan., to play football for Tabor.

Alton Franklin, 19, was arrested earlier Saturday on aggravated battery charges in relation to the case. McPherson police say they expect Franklin will face additional charges now that Brown has died.

Franklin is currently in the McPherson County Jail.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

McPherson police have made an arrest in the beating of a Tabor college student.

McPherson Police Chief Robert McClarity said Alton Lamont Franklin, 19, of Dallas, Texas, was booked into jail for aggravated battery. He is being held on $100,000 bond.

Brandon Brown, a member of the Tabor College football team remained in critical condition in a Wichita hospital Friday night. He has been hospitalized in Wichita since early Sunday morning, after he was found severely injured outside of a McPherson home.

Police still have not released much information about their investigation into what led to Brandon’s injuries.

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