The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

December 10, 2012

Cowboys involved in fatal wreck were close friends

(Continued)

"I have 20 grandchildren and Jerry is the oldest," Clark said. "They all looked up to him. They praised him. They were all really upset and crying. They are going to miss their big cousin. He was one in a million."

The accident happened hours before Brent was to be on a team flight to Cincinnati. The Bengals held a moment of silence before Sunday's game, and most Cowboys bowed their heads. Dallas quarterback Tony Romo and several other players had their hands over their hearts.

On Fox's NFL Sunday pregame show, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said the team had focused on Brown's death in the "last few hours." He didn't mention Brent, who played in the first 12 games and was a bigger presence than expected on defense because of injuries to Jay Ratliff.

"First of all we all know, but we remind ourselves that there is something more important than football, and this is life, and certainly the lost life of Jerry," Jones said. "On the other hand, they know the best way they can honor Jerry, because he was such a hard worker, so conscientious and enthusiastic about his career."

The Cowboys didn't hide their emotions after Dan Bailey kicked a field goal as time expired to keep the team's playoff hopes alive.

"I don't remember crying this much other than maybe the day I was born," Dallas defensive end Marcus Spears said. "With Josh's situation and Jerry being gone, you felt it."

Cowboys spokesman Rich Dalrymple said the team was planning a private memorial service for Tuesday in the Dallas area.

It marked the second straight week the NFL found itself dealing with a tragedy right before game day.

Last Saturday, Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher fatally shot his girlfriend before killing himself in front of his coach and general manager. The 25-year-old Belcher shot himself in the parking lot at the team's practice complex at Arrowhead Stadium.

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