Former NFL and Virginia Tech safety Keion Carpenter died Thursday morning after collapsing during a family vacation in Florida. He was 39.
In an Instagram post Thursday, a family spokesperson said Carpenter died at 6:47 a.m. in Miami. He had been in a coma for 24 hours, according to the family, and erroneous reports had circulated Wednesday evening that he already had died.
Carpenter played for the Bills from 1999-2001 and the Falcons from 2002-05. He played his final three seasons with Atlanta after undergoing spinal fusion surgery to fix an injury suffered in a head-to-head collision with Eagles running back Duce Staley in a January 2003 playoff game.
While Carpenter achieved fame on the football field, making 14 interceptions in his NFL career, he made a much more significant impact after retiring.
In 2005, Carpenter founded a non-profit in Baltimore called The Carpenter House, which according to its website works “to support the development of healthy homes and environments for low income children to thrive and reach their highest potential for academic success.”