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Injured brother becomes Tarik Cohen’s purpose

NFL: MAY 29 Chicago Bears OTA

LAKE FOREST, IL - MAY 29: Chicago Bears running back Tarik Cohen (29) answers questions from the media after the Chicago Bears organized team activities or OTA on May 29, 2019 at Halas Hall in Lake Forest, IL. (Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Bears running back Tarik Cohen has been dealing quietly with a family tragedy this offseason. He recently opened up about the situation at a youth football camp.

Cohen’s 19-year-old brother, Dante Norman, was shot in early June. Dante is now paralyzed from the waist down.

I feel like I was injured also,” Cohen said Monday at the camp he hosted at Elk Grove High School, via Larry Mayer of “Somebody I’ve been around my whole life. I feel like we’re one. It’s not like he’s a different person; it’s like we’re the same person. So if anything affects him, it affects me. That’s my little brother. I’ve done the best to protect him my whole life.”

Cohen had kept the matter private until last Saturday, at another youth football camp at his alma mater of North Carolina A&T.

“It just came out,” Cohen said. “It wasn’t planned or anything. I just saw a camper who was in a wheelchair also and I just saw my brother in him and I saw how much fun he was having. It just made me think of my brother and how his life is about to be.”

Cohen has now focused on doing all he can to help and support his brother.

“I feel like definitely he’s my purpose,” Cohen said. “I just want to do things for him. I know it’s not possible, but I feel like I want to walk for him. I want to experience things in my life and let him see those things so that he can feel it as if he’s done it also.”

We extend our best wishes to Dante Norman as he confronts this challenge, and to Tarik and the rest of Dante’s family as they rally to support and assist him.