Adrian Peterson: NFL star’s two-year-old son ‘beaten to death’ by his mother's boyfriend
SPORTS By -The Daily Mail | October 14th 2013
|Adrian Peterson's two-year-old son Adrian Jr (pictured). It is believed that it is another little boy, who the football player had out of wedlock, who was beaten to death|
NFL star Adrian Peterson was no stranger to tragedy before son, 2, 'severely beaten to death by his mother's boyfriend'
When Adrian Peterson was seven, he saw his older brother die in a bike accident after being hit by a drunken driver.
For Peterson's teenage years, his father was in prison. He grew up poor in east Texas. Shortly before the Minnesota Vikings drafted him in 2007, a half-brother, was shot and killed.
Long before Peterson began running through the NFL record book, he learned to turn tragedy into fuel for an exceptional career. Football has always been his escape, and now he's dealing with more off-the-field strife.
One of Peterson's sons, a victim of alleged child abuse, died on Friday of severe head injuries suffered in the attack.
The man charged in the case, Joseph Patterson, was home alone with the two-year-old boy on Wednesday and called 911 to report he was choking, according to police. Patterson was the boyfriend of the child's mother.
Peterson missed practice on Thursday to be in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where the boy lived with his mother and Patterson. He returned to the Vikings on Friday.
'Things that I go through, I've said a thousand times, it helps me play this game to a different level,'he said after practice, about an hour after the child's death. 'I'm able to kind of release a lot of my stress through this sport, so that's what I plan on doing.'
|Minnesota Vikings player Adrian Peterson pictured this summer during a training camp with his two-year-old son Adrian Jr|
Twitter has been filled with public condolences for Peterson and his loved ones. From LeBron James to Barry Sanders to Josh Groban, his peers, opponents and admirers expressed their sadness and support.
'Praying for you and your family. May God give you the strength,' tweeted New York Giants defensive end Justin Tuck, whose team plays the Vikings on October 21.
The Vikings play Carolina on Sunday, and Peterson promised to participate.
'I'll be ready to roll, focused,' he said.
That's no surprise to anyone who's known him.
'The death of his brother at that young age drove him to want to be the very best that he could be,' said Steve Eudey, who was Peterson's youth football coach and a mentor to him growing up.
'Because in his opinion, Brian was always better than he was and he felt he had to live up to those expectations.'
Adapted from Daily Mail
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