NMU student, football player dies unexpectedly

Kayla Miller

The NMU community was shaken this week after a student unexpectedly died in a residence hall Tuesday morning.

Herbert.OnlineSophomore construction management major Anthony Herbert, 20, died Jan. 17 in his dorm room in Spalding Hall. Herbert, a native of Lapeer, Michigan, was a starting right guard on the NMU football team since 2015.

“Anthony’s passing is felt deeply by many,” said NMU Athletic Director Forrest Karr. “He made a positive impact on our campus and was everything we hope for in a student athlete.”

Derek Hall, assistant vice president of marketing and communications, said Herbert attended football practice early Tuesday morning, ate breakfast on campus and then returned to his dorm room. Emergency responders were called to the residence hall around 8 a.m. due to a medical emergency.

An autopsy was performed Tuesday and the suspected cause of death is an enlarged heart, said Herbert’s mother, Lori in a Facebook post on her public page.

“A part of our lives [has] been taken away from us, and we are beyond devastated. We are amazed at how many lives [have] been touched by our son! We love you all,” she said. “We are beyond blessed to be able to call Anthony our son, and brother!”

Off the field, Herbert received all-GLIAC academic team honors because of his performance in the classroom last semester, according to a press release from the Athletic Department.

“In my brief time with Anthony, I could tell that he was a great young man,” said head football coach Kyle Nystrom, who was hired in late December 2016. “He was respected by his coaches and teammates and was a young man we could rely on. We are devastated by this tragedy, and we are praying for his family in this time of crisis.”

Counseling services are available through NMU for anyone affected by this loss and in need of help.

“If Anthony was a part of your life, the university community and I offer our deepest sympathy and prayers to you at this time,” President Fritz Erickson said in a
written statement. “Anthony will be missed by many.”

A GoFundMe.com page set up to help pay for funeral expenses had raised over $13,500 in approximately one day at the time of print. A funeral is planned for Jan. 21 in Lapeer, Michigan. More details can be found on obit.muirbrotherslapeer.com.