Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Chris Henry has died after falling from the back of a moving pickup truck in Charlotte, North Carolina. The 26-year-old athlete was reportedly in North Carolina to plan his wedding when he fell from the vehicle during a dispute with his fiancée, Loleini Tonga.
According to police, Henry jumped into the bed of the pickup truck as Tonga was driving away, and then fell from the vehicle about a half mile later. He was rushed to a local hospital and later pronounced dead, after suffering what police described as “life-threatening injuries.”
Henry had a reputation in the NFL for being short-tempered and unpredictable. In 2007 he was suspended for eight games, and in 2008 he was released from the Bengals after his fifth arrest in 28 months (he was later reinstated). His rap sheet includes DUI, drug charges, weapons charges and drinking with underage girls in a hotel room. A judge once referred to him as a "one man crime wave."
Henry’s agent, Andy Simms, said in a statement that the real Chris Henry was a different story. "For those who knew Chris, he was nothing like his public perception,” Simms said. “A loving and caring individual, he was thankful for what he had in life, and proud of what he had overcome."
"We ask that you keep Chris' family — especially the young children he leaves behind — in your prayers. It is tragic when a life is taken so young. He was a man just realizing his potential, not just in football, but in life."
Henry leaves behind three children with his fiancée.