The mother and stepfather of Patriots great Andre Tippett died within five days of each other due to the coronavirus.
Tippett, a Hall of Fame linebacker with the Patriots from 1982-93, told The Athletic that his stepfather, Willie Lovett, died on April 21, and his mother, Frances Tippett Lovett, died this past Saturday. Both were 79 and lived in Irvington, N.J.
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Tippett's son, Coby, a defensive back at the Towson University in Maryland, also tested positive for COVID-19 is now self-quarantined after returning home. Andre Tippett, 60, is now director of community affairs for the Patriots. On Monday, he posted to Instagram about his loss and also thanked "the courageous men and women on the front lines of this health crisis."
"I know this is going on all over the world," Tippett told The Athletic's Steve Buckley. "But someone asked me two months ago, or maybe six weeks ago, if I knew anybody that had been touched by that. And I remember saying, ‘No. But God forbid that anything like that would happen in my family.' And I thought that nothing would happen."
Because large gatherings are still unable to take place as the pandemic continues, Tippett said a memorial service is being planned for later in the year.
"We've mourned, we're still mourning," said Tippett, who in his Hall of Fame induction speech in 2008 credited his mother with holding the family together when he was growing up in Alabama. "But I'm feeling stronger because there have been so many people who've reached out. I've gotten a lot of strength just from the support."