Former Ohio State Football Player, 27, Dead After Apartment Fire, Remembered as a 'Loving Dad'
An Ohio community is mourning the death of a 27-year-old local football coach.
Elyria High School assistant football coach De'van Bogard died on Tuesday morning after a fire broke out in his apartment, according to WBNS which reported that interim Elyria Fire Chief Joe Pronesti said Bogard's body was found by the door.
"With profound sadness, we are attempting to process the tremendous loss of a very beloved football coach, De'van Bogard," Elyria City Schools said on Facebook. "We can't say enough how loved, admired and respected he was by the Elyria Schools community and most especially by the athletes, coaches and families involved in Elyria Pioneer Football.
"The team is grieving his tragic death. We extend our deepest sympathies to his family and friends," the statement continued. "We are deeply grateful for the impact he's had on the football program and its many athletes and students."
Bogard played football for Cleveland's Glenville High School and joined Ohio State in 2012, playing under coach Urban Meyer, Reuters reported.
His promising career was hampered by a series of injuries, including a torn ACL. But he was a part of the 2014 team that won the national championship, the outlet said.
According to a GoFundMe set up for his family, Bogard was a father who "loved to live life and have fun, wise beyond his years."
"Coach Bogard first and foremost was a loving dad to his son Jaden whom he leaves behind. He took so much pride in his role as a father," the campaign's organizer wrote. "The players all got to know Jaden as well as he'd come hang out from time to time."
"He also leaves behind his mom whom he adored and looked up to for the way she raised him," the organizer continued. "He and I had several personal conversations about his mad respect for single moms and the way they make things happen. He truly appreciated and loved her so much."
The donation page has raised just over $3,000 as of Wednesday afternoon.
Chief Pronesti told the Chronicle-Telegram that the cause of the apartment fire was not suspicious and was determined to be accidental.