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 Youtube/The Players' Tribune
Youtube/The Players' Tribune

Tommie Harris, Former NFL Star, Talks Faith in God after Surviving Tragic Loss of Wife and Child

Mary Scott
Oct 29, 2019
06:30 P.M.
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Tommie Harris, the former NFL defensive tackle who has survived the loss of a wife and child, recently opened up about his faith in God and how the tragedies impacted his life.

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Harris was one of the guests on a recent episode of Fox Nation's "Ainsley's Bible Study," where he recalled the two moments that defined his faith and philosophy to this day.

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THE FIRST TRAGEDY

According to Fox News, the 36-year-old former athlete took a trip down memory lane to 2012 when Ashley, his wife of 41 days, passed away. Per Daily Mail, Harris met his late wife in college, and they shared two kids.

"My wife was going in to have a breast reduction surgery. We [were] married for 41 days," Harris recalled. "I was on a plane... never knowing that when we land, I would get a phone call that said my wife stopped breathing on the table, and I needed to hurry up and get to Oklahoma."

Tommie Harris and late wife Ashley at the "So The World May Hear Awards Gala" on July 24, 2011 in St. Paul, Minnesota | Photo: Getty Images

Tommie Harris and late wife Ashley at the "So The World May Hear Awards Gala" on July 24, 2011 in St. Paul, Minnesota | Photo: Getty Images

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He continued:

"I end up flying to Oklahoma. My wife was dead when I got there, but they didn’t tell me. For three days, I had to watch her on life support and watch people come in and get her organs. And I found out over the internet… I had to pull a cord at 28 [years old], having millions of dollars, and nothing could help me at that moment. I lost all purpose for finances, for everything."

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LOSING A CHILD

"That was the biggest time I believe my faith was tested, and I remember pulling the cord, and I told God to let His will be done in my life," he added.

Harris said he waited four years before getting into a relationship with another woman, and even there, tragedy lurked. The former "Chicago Bears" star and his new woman had a baby girl together.

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LESSONS LEARNED

"Four months later, we walked in the room, and she [had] passed away of SIDS, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome," he shared.

Harris said his experiences drew him closer to and helped him forge a relationship with God. "I believe that God is speaking to me to show people how valuable life is and at any moment the game can change," he said. "So, are you playing your hardest at every moment?"

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THE MIRACLE

Harris added:

"I look at a miracle every day when I look in the mirror and see that I'm not in a straitjacket or [have] lost my mind for what I've been through. I'm a walking testimony. God moves every day through me, encourages me, inspires me to help someone else beyond myself."

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According to God Reports, Harris suddenly retired from football after Ashley’s untimely death so he could focus on raising their kids, Tyson and Tinsley, and not put them at risk of losing another parent.

"Today, I’m not the man Ashley married. I’m a much better version of that man — one I wish she was here to see," Harris noted in 2017 of his newfound faith. "But I know that she is here, every day, watching over me, Tyson and Tinsley."

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