By Sean Kramer and Madison McCord
The athletic department has confirmed that wide receiver Ken McRoyal has died in his home state of California late Saturday evening/early Sunday morning. The statement said that details of his death are not available.
“It’s a devastating loss,” coach Robb Akey said. “We’ve lost a brother, a teammate, a family member. But, more importantly, a momma lost her son today. All of our prayers go to the family – that they can be strong in their healing from this tragedy.”
McRoyal was a fast riser on the Vandal football team. He came to Idaho in August 2011 as a walk on from El Camino Junior College to join Carson High school teammate Dominique Blackman. McRoyal was primed to compete for a starting job as a slot receiver and contribute heavily in special teams. His progress throughout the 2011 season and 2012 spring season had him set to earn a scholarship this fall.
McRoyal leaves behind a two-year-old daughter.
McRoyal was known around the team for his high work rate and fun personality. His teammates say he was kind, professional and displayed his appreciation for the coaches, program and school.
We at Vandal Nation send our thoughts and prayers to McRoyal’s family and friends as they navigate through this difficult time.
Friends and teammates are remembering him today:
Everybody just gotta keep their heads up.. Keep good faith and we all gonna see him again.
— Taylor J Elmo (@TjMO81) May 13, 2012
Starting receiver, starting punt returner, was about to do it big this year, he was on his way.. all for Koi.. #hopes&dreams
— ASAP Bassy (@Rybassy) May 13, 2012
Everything he did was for her. And it breaks my heart that he’s gone now. I can’t really believe it. Again RIP Ken
— Maxx Forde (@maxxforde) May 13, 2012
Prayin for #86 family n his beautiful baby girl koi..
— just VellY #iEG(@frostbiteVelly1) May 13, 2012
I talk a lot never though I’d say rip to my dogs my ace my fam#rip86
— DOMINIQUE BLACKMAN (@vandalsQB3) May 13, 2012