Dad of Seattle Seahawks star dies after being hit by vehicle in South Carolina

Justin Rex/AP
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Carlos Dunlap Sr., father of Seattle Seahawks defensive back Carlos Dunlap, died after being hit by a car on Saturday, Jan. 22, in North Charleston, South Carolina.

North Charleston Police told WCBD that officers responded to a report of a collision between a vehicle and a pedestrian at about 10:40 p.m. in the 2800 block of Ashley Phosphate Road. The pedestrian who was hit was transported to a hospital for treatment, where he died of his injuries and was identified as Carlos Dunlap Sr.

According to WCIV, Dunlap owned a bail bonds company in North Charleston.

“We lost a great Patriot supporter today — Carlos Dunlap Sr. has passed away — I want his family to know how much I and all our football family will miss him,” Fort Dorchester High School athletic director Steve LaPrad posted on the school’s website.

LaPrad worked with Dunlap Sr. since Dunlap’s son played football at the high school, according to WYFF. Dunlap graduated from Fort Dorchester in 2007.

The driver stayed at the accident scene and no charges have been filed as of Jan. 24, NCPD spokesperson Harvey Jacobs told WYFF.

David Aylor Law Offices, which represents the Dunlap family, released a statement regarding the incident on Jan. 23.

“It is with sadness we report the passing of Carlos Dunlap Sr. last night,” the office wrote in a statement. “He was a loving father and well-respected community leader. We will miss him dearly.”

According to David Aylor Law, the NCPD continues to investigate the accident, and the Dunlaps asked Aylor to relay a message to the public.

“As a close friend of David and David Aylor Law Offices the family has asked us to let others know to please respect his family at this time of grieving and provide them with privacy. If you must, you can contact our offices with any questions,” the office wrote.

When Dunlap, a two-time Pro Bowl defensive end, was traded from the Cincinnati Bengals to the Seahawks in 2020, his father went public with his approval of the deal. His son had written publicly about his challenges while in Cincinnati and how he looked forward to playing with the Seahawks.

“Earlier this year, when things weren’t going so great in Cincy, I’ll be honest with you: I did some serious thinking on what I wanted to do with my career. Weighed all options. I even gave some thought to retiring — I really did. I took out a notepad, and wrote down the pros and the cons of just walking away,” Dunlap wrote about his time with the Bengals.

His father knew the challenges that Dunlap was facing, but said that he knew his faith prepared him well.

“I knew he was a young man of faith and he would be good,” Dunlap said in an interview with WCIV about his son’s journey and challenges through college football at the University of Florida and the NFL as he transitioned between teams. “It was harder on me than anything else because that’s my son and I love him very dearly.”

McClatchy News reached out to the North Charleston Police Department for comment on the investigation on Jan. 24 and has not received a response.

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