[title_box title=”CBS Sports airs Zaevion Dobson video before Super Bowl 50″]
“Now, to a tragedy in Tennessee making headlines this evening,” an audio clip from a December news report plays. “A 15-year-old high school football player risking his life to protect three young girls.”
Zaevion Dobson is now known nationwide as the Fulton High School football player from Knoxville who lost his life due to gang violence after protecting three girls during a shooting. During live coverage leading up to Super Bowl 50, CBS Sports aired a special video sharing Dobson’s story. The video aired around 3:30 p.m. and lasted for seven minutes.
New York Jets wide receiver Brandon Marshall did not realize how extraordinary Zaevion Dobson was until he arrived in Knoxville to help film this story. After spending time in Knoxville, he learned that Dobson “wasn’t only a hero when he laid his life down to save three.”
“When I got to Knoxville, and I got on the ground, I went to the high school. I spent time with his family, his mother, his brothers. I walked the streets. I was in his neighborhood, and the most disturbing and saddest part was this kid was a great kid, and he was in the right place when he saved three girls’ lives,” Marshall said.
The video featured interviews from Zenobia Dobson, his mother; Zack Dobson, his brother; Rob Black, his football coach; and a short statement from Knoxville Police Chief David Rausch, who officially announced Dobson’s death in December. The video also included President Barack Obama addressing Dobson while discussing gun control.
Dobson’s older brother Zack mentioned that the two stayed focused on having a football career to avoid gang violence, which is a serious issue in his neighborhood.
“I just told Zaevion, ‘We better (not) do that. We better stay strong, and we’ve got to do what we started. We’ve got to finish and make it out of here.”
Fulton High School head coach Rob Black remembers Dobson as an unselfish kid who made all the right choices. Zack laughed, also remembering how teammates would surround Dobson’s locker just to talk to him.
“You know, most of the guys on a football team that are 15 years old, it’s all about them. I describe him as a fun kid. His locker was one of those places where teammates flocked to,” Black said.
Zack remembers running immediately after hearing gun shots and returning to his motionless brother. His mother said that she heard the gunshots and hoped that her children were safe. However, Zack told her that “his brother is gone” when she arrived to the scene.
“’Wow. I just thought about everything. Everything about my child. Wow,” she cried. However, Zenobia remembering her son’s laugh is what helps her through the pain.
While his family stills mourns his loss, they remain proud of the fact that Dobson’s death has had significant momentum in promoting gun control movements.
“It was sad, but just knowing what he stood for makes me very proud of him,” his mother said.
“I just want to tell him that I love him, and that I’m going to make it,” Zack said.
To watch the full video, click here.
Info for this article and featured image obtained via video clip originally shown by CBS Sports
Edited by Jessica Carr