By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
We reported that James Madison Dukes’ softball player Lauren Bernett passed away on Tuesday. Now, we know, according to the police, that her death was likely a suicide.
TMZ Sports spoke with Rockingham County Sheriff Bryan Hutcheson. He told them, “We are in the process of conducting a death investigation into the incident. And it is currently classified as an apparent suicide.”
No other details were released on how she may have killed herself. An autospy may not have been performed yet by the Medical Examiner’s office.
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“Out of respect for her family and friends, there is no other information to relase at this time,” Hutcheson said.
Her teammates were scheduled to take the field on Wednesday. However, due to Bernett’s untimely death, those games against Longwood were postponed until a later date.
Bernett is the latest college athlete to commit suicide. Wisconsin Badgers track star Sarah Shulze allegedly committed suicide recently, as well.
“College athletics is great because of the people with whom we get to interact every day,” JMU officials said in announcing the tragedy on Tuesday. “We are a tight family. We are grateful that Lauren has been part of our JMU Athletics community and will always consider her to be a Duke. We will miss her dearly.
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“Our thoughts are with her family; her coaches, teammates and friends; the rest of our department staff and student-athletes; and the entire JMU community. JMU Nation is a close community, and we grieve together.”
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