WALTERBORO, SC (WCSC) - Former Walterboro star and NFL player Norman Hand died Friday morning in Colleton County at the age of 37. Colleton County Coroner Richard Harvey says Hand died from hypertensive cardiovascular disease.
"Norman Hand, 37 years old, collapsed at his residence around 11 a.m. Friday. He was taken to the Colleton Medical Center where he was pronounced dead at 12:39 p.m. There is no foul play suspected," said the Colleton County coroner.
Hand was an honorable mention All-American by Parade Magazine and USA Today his senior season at Walterboro. He was also named the SCHSL Defensive Lineman of the Year in 1990.
He went on to play at the University of Mississippi after transferring from Itawamba Junior College. He had 3.5 sacks his senior year with the Rebels and was a second team All-SEC selection.
From there, Hand was drafted in the fifth round of the NFL Draft by the Miami Dolphins in 1995 and went on to have a 10 year career in the league playing with the San Diego Chargers, New Orleans Saints, Seattle Seahawks and the New York Giants.
He ended his pro career after the 2004 season with 22.5 sacks and 2 interceptions.
Hand was the first football player to reach the NFL from Walterboro.
His family issued a brief statement Friday afternoon:
"Our beloved Norman was brought to the hospital earlier today. He was unresponsive and resuscitation not successful. He passed away early this afternoon surrounded by his family. Respect for our family will be greatly appreciated as we mourn this incomprehensible loss. We ask that you focus on Norman's life and the contributions he made rather than on his untimely death."
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