MANCHESTER, GA – A Georgia-based high school football player was found dead from gunshot injuries on Sunday. The young player’s family is now mourning the unexpected loss and seeking answers. Seventeen-year-old Brandon Smith lived with his grandmother, 51-year-old Maxine Smith, who had looked after him since he was a baby. She noted that Brandon seemed troubled on the night before his death but did not share what was on his mind.
Maxine recalled her grandson as a loving individual who cherished football and aspired to support his family. She suspects that the culprit was acquainted with Brandon, though she is unsure why anyone would wish to harm him.
As of Wednesday, the Manchester Police and the Georgia Bureau of Investigations have not identified or apprehended any suspects in the case. However, they have informed Maxine that they have promising leads in their ongoing investigation.
The evening following Brandon’s death, his teammates commemorated their fallen member by carrying out his No. 52 jersey during their championship football game. Maxine chose not to attend the emotionally charged event as seeing the jersey would intensify her grief. Brandon’s siblings – Janiyah, Janaya, and Brenlyn – are also grappling with their loss.
Especially, Janiyah has taken the bereavement particularly hard. Maxine hopes for the world to remember Brandon as a kind-hearted boy who selflessly aided others and treated everyone with respect.