Community mourning loss of 17-year-old Tatum High football player

Published: Apr. 17, 2023 at 9:28 AM CDT
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RUSK COUNTY, TEXAS (KSLA) - Members of the Tatum, Texas community are grieving after the loss of Braden Mimbs.

According to Rusk County Sherriff’s Office, they received a 911 call at around 8:30 p.m. on Friday, April 14 in regards to an accident. The Tatum Police Department is now leading the investigation, and confirmed the incident happened on Tatum High School’s property.

Braden, a junior rising start on the football team, died from injuries. Police say they are currently investigating the incident.

A prayer vigil was held in honor of Braden on Saturday, April 15 in front of the high school. Football coach Whitney Keeling says the athlete was the kind of kid everyone would want on their team.

“Braden was a special human being, special football player. There’s some kids that have issues that you have to battle through, but Braden wasn’t one of those. Braden was a guy that loved his craft, he would ask for extra work. Those guys are few and far between.”

For Keeling, he wonders what Braden would have gone on to do with his life.

“What could Braden have been? I think he could have been anything he wanted. Braden loved football and I think he definitely wanted to play college football. Would that have happened? He was great in the classroom, he might have become a doctor for all we know. The memories are all that you have left.”

Keeling dedicated the 2023 Tatum High School football season in honor of Braden. The school says counselors will be available to anyone who needs someone to talk to.