Navy offensive lineman David Forney has died at the age of 22, the school announced Saturday. Forney was found unresponsive at Bancroft Hall on the Navy campus in Annapolis, Maryland. Official cause of death has not been determined, but foul play is not suspected.
"Words cannot express our pain and sorrow," said Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo. "First and foremost, our deepest condolences to the Forney family. The Navy Football Brotherhood is not a team, we are a family. We are devastated to have lost one of our brothers. We all loved -- and will always love -- David. We pray for strength during this most difficult time."
Forney was one of the foundations of Navy's triple-option rushing attack during his first three years with the program. The Walkersville, Maryland, native played in 39 consecutive games and was a three-year letter winner.
"There is no tighter bond or commitment to each other than found within the Navy football family. To lose a brother is devastating to these young men who grow closer every minute during their four years at the Academy," said athletics director Chet Gladchuk. "We are a community that is in emotional pain today. Our deepest condolences to his immediate family and all of his friends. David's memory and the influence he had on everyone he touched will live on and remain an inspiration forever within the annals of Navy football and the Brigade of Midshipmen."
Forney was set to graduate in May with a degree in political science. He was a member of the 9th Company and was assigned to become a cryptologic warfare officer.
"The entire Naval Academy family – the Brigade of Midshipmen, the faculty, staff, and coaches – are heartbroken over the tragic and unexpected loss of Midshipman David Forney," said Vice Adm. Sean Buck, 63rd Superintendent, U.S. Naval Academy. "On behalf of the Naval Academy family, my wife, Joanne, and I extend our deepest condolences and heartfelt sympathies to the Forney family, their friends, as well as to David's extended Naval Academy family."
Funeral arrangements for Forney have not been scheduled at this time.