There remains a lot of questions about the death of a former Riverdale High School football player. Mitchell Maxwell was found dead Thursday morning, leaving friends and former teammates in shock.
By every indication, Maxwell was a tough guy. He played on the offensive line for the Riverdale Warriors, and planned to try to walk on at Mississippi State this fall.
"On the field, great competitor," said friend and former teammate Aaron Aydelott. "Off the field, very generous guy, always wanted to make everybody else happy. He pleased everybody. He wasn't happy unless everyone he was with was happy, and that's one of the things that made him special."
Maxwell's brother discovered the body of the 18-year-old Thursday morning in his bedroom.
His former coach could hardly believe the news.
"He was a great kid. He was intense, dependable. Hardworking kid, a 'yes sir, no sir' kid. This kind of situation just took me, took us all, took the wind out of all of us," said Riverdale football coach Ron Aydelott.
Several Riverdale alumni remembered Mitchell as a hard-worker determined to make a go at college ball.
"He was working out. We were doing a diet together, just eating healthier, doing push-ups every night. And we weren't going to let each other slack, and everything. I could just tell he was really expecting to do well at Mississippi State and everything," said former teammate Scottie Boykin.
Fortunately, Maxwell made an impact in high school, securing a legacy that ended entirely too soon.
"You just don't know with the youth of today, and it's tragic when you lose one," Ron Aydelott said. "My heart goes out to his parents. He's got three other brothers, and I know they're devastated."
The cause of death remains unknown.
According to our news partners at the Daily News Journal, Maxwell's father, Austin, was a former leader of the county's Republican Party, and a Bronze Star recipient. He and his wife, Maxwell's mother, were out of town Thursday, when their son died.
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