Hurting for a teammate and friend

JIM BENDER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:02 AM ET

Stanford Samuels is hurting for his Blue Bombers teammate.

Defensive back Jovon Johnson rushed back to his Erie, Pa., home after his half-brother, 15-year-old Daquan Crosby, was shot dead Monday night.

"When I came in, we really clicked," Stanford said yesterday. "I mean, I bragged about my son a lot and he bragged about his little brother (Crosby). He talked about how he was a good (foot)ball player and how he was doing well ... so my heart definitely goes out to him.

"It's one of those things where the first thing I did when it happened to him was (to) call my son (nine-year-old, B.J.), and got him on the phone and talked to him because when those kinds of things happen, when you come from areas like we come from, you do all that you can to try to prevent it from happening. But ultimately, man, it's life, sometimes."

Stanford exchanged text messages with Johnson on Tuesday because he did not want to call him.

"I mean, times like these are sensitive, man," he said. "We texted back and forth a couple of times and I told him he was in our prayers and in our thoughts and that we're feeling for him.

"I can imagine how he feels -- just from the talks I had with him and how much pride he had in his little brother so yeah, I know it's tough ... What can you say? It's just one of those things where you hope it never happens but when it does happen, you can imagine how hard it is. It's unfathomable to me but we feel his loss and we hope he and his family come through it well."

Bomber head coach Doug Berry has told Johnson to take as much time off as he needs.

"Obviously, in a situation like that, the personal part takes over," Berry said. "Even though I can never feel what he's going through, I can certainly feel for him right now. So, whatever he needs to do and whenever he comes back to play ... I think people in a tragic situation are lucky to be able to come back to situations where they can re-focus and put their mind on something else again."

The Erie Times-News reported that Crosby may have known his assailant and that the police are still investigating.

"He wasn't no bad boy," Sandra Jordan, Crosby's mother, told the Times-News. "He didn't do drugs. He was a sweet boy."


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