June 17, 2014 - by

Responses from Tuesday, February 27, 2001

Pottingers, Sugar Land, Tx
My precious Darlings,
How wonderfully blessed you are. We are so crushed and so sad regarding the sudden loss of this great young man. Jesus said to her “I am the resurrection and the life He who believes in me will live even though he dies and who ever lives and believes in me will never die.(John 11:25&26). Devaughn will live 4-ever and ever. He loved the Lord, he was a faithful servant he touched everyones heart. He was an angel who did his work and is now with his Father who is in heaven. Devard you are now being guided by our heavenly Father and your own assigned Angel. He wants you to do what you both love and can do. Mom, sisters, brothers, cousin F. niece, aunt, dad and friends may the spirit of the Lord comfort you always. His love and mine.
Let them give thanks to the Lord for His love and for miracles he does for people. Psalm 107:8

Stephen Spivack, Rochester, Minnesota
The whole Seminoles Family has lost a great athlete, son, brother and friend. The thoughts and prayers of the whole Rochester Football community has lost an outstanding role model that we look up to when we take the fields we play with pride.
We hope that your family and football community we honor you next season, #53 you will always be remembered.
#21 Stephen

Matt Spiers, Sugar Land, Texas
I was blessed to know Devaughn. To me, he was larger than life, so massive and huge, but he was so gentle hearted on the inside. He was always so happy and cheerful, and full of life. I remember everyday walking into our high school field house locker room, and he would be goofing around, having fun, and he constantly had a smile on his face. I remember his laugh, and how joyful he was. These were some of the good times that I will remember Devaugh for, always and forever. It makes me feel a little better knowing that he is watching down on us from heaven, of course with that big smile on his face. I mourn for him, and all his family and friends, especially for Devard, who was closer to Devaughn than anyone else in this world. But Devard, I know that Devaghn will always be with you, no matter where you are and what you do, he’s there. I pray that the LORD take good care of one his most prized servant, and i look forward to the day that i will see him again.!
And till that day, I will miss you.


Nathan Sweeting – Nassau,Bahamas
I am Devard’s and Devaughn’s cousin and was one of their very close friends back when they used to go to Nassau Christian Academy back in Nassau. When I heard the tragic news I couln’t come to.
From my years of knowing him, Devaughn was very special to me and had a way of putting a smile on everyone’s faces as he walked by.
Devard, if you read this, I would really appreciate hearing from you and your mother. And remember, this was all apart of God’d master plan.
I miss Devaughn already and hope that you,Dennis,Stacy,and your parents remember God in your grieving and know that He will bring you comfort.
My condolences and love,
Nathan Sweeting
Class of 1994

Ashlee. Richmond, TX

Sean Stiver, Houston TX
Devaughn was an amazing person, and no one doubts that. The only explantation for why he left us so early is that ogd wanted him back. He touched so many of us in a way I am sure that he never knew. I didn’t hang out with devaughn all of the time, but I always felt that I could come to him for everything. I used to love coming into art and hearing him say, “Stiiiver”, and I am sad that I will neer hear that again, but he is in a better place I know he is happy. Be strong Devard, I know it is tough, but he loves you and he will be watching out for you. My prayers are for the whole family. God Bless.

Sean Stiver, Lubbock TX
Devaughn we will always miss you, and Darlings you are all in our prayers, I had my entire fraternity pray for all of ya’ll on monday I am truly sorry about this and I am just shocked, I have no idea how this could have happened, and I will always miss Devaughn saying “Stiiiver”. I love ya’ll and god bless.

Bill Hollis Waco,TX Baylor University
Devaughn was a great football player and a great person. I enjoyed watching him play in high school and seeing him on TV in college. My prayers go out to him and his family. Devard, be strong and remember your brother will always be with you. To Novi if you read this I know this is hard on you too and my prayers are with you.

God Bless the family. I am just a big FSU fan but still feel saddened by the news. I pray for the family that everything goes well and that the strength he left will make the family stronger.

Severia & Tyrin Void–Orangeburg SC
Warm summer sun, shine kindly here;
Warm southern wind, blow softly here;
Green sod above, lie light, lie light –
Good night, dear heart, good night, good night.

May God be with the family. Devaughn we will miss you.

Kyle Butler (Richmond, Texas)
Devaughn, I remember playing basketball with you in the eigth grade and seeing you in the hallway at school all four years. You were an intimidating site man. Devard, you are in my prayers as well as the rest of the Darling family. Devaughn was a great person and and insperation to anyone as dedicated to sports as he was. It’s hard to lose someone as great and as special as Devaughn, but I know we can all come together in this tragedy and Devaughns name will always live on in our stories and own personal memories.

Jarrod Tralie and Lou Nguyen, Sugar Land TX
Devaughn was a great person. Though we only knew him briefly through high school, he always treated us like friends. His grace on and off the field has left many lasting memories. Devard, we hope you find the strength to hold your head up high and know that Devaughn is in a better place. Our hearts and wises go out to you and your family.

Greta & Tyrone Void, Orangeburg SC
To the Darling family, my condolences, thoughts and prayers are with you at this time.

All Is Well
The expansive oceans of our lives
Are filled with seas of experiences
Trifling, important, lively, boring
Calming, frightening, safe and treacherous
But always learning and growing, growing and learning

Rock me gentle sea
Cradle me in the bosom of your tiny ripples
Let me feel at one with your seeming
Ending-never, peace and serenity
As I make my way through this day
Happy, unaware of the impending storms;
There is only peace, gentle peace

But did I speak too quickly?
What is this turbulence that has erupted?
Oh please, not now
I am, was, at one with you
Oh no, the ship of my life has tilted to one side
I think it’s going to capsize
I feel it heaving with the waves
As they whip themselves into a fury
Determined to prove their omnipotence
And I one sailor trying to navigate the choppy waters
But I cannot do this alone.
I make a conscious effort to inhale the salty air
Slowly, slowly. slowly, slowly
My body goes limp and
I release the wheel and cover the compass

I realize that the direction of this ship
Is not in my hands.
I let go and let the Divine Creator take charge
And I awake yawning, stretching, rubbing my eyes
As I behold a glorious new day.

Tallahassee, Florida
To the Darling Family & Seminoles
May the PEACE of GOD that passes ALL understanding be with you, comfort you. Remembering that HE (God)PROMISED not to put on us no more than we could bear. God PROMISED that His Grace is sufficient(more than enough)to meet our needs.

As Devaughn is sitting next to The Coach of coaches looking down on us. Let’s lift our head & hearts rejoice in the fact we know that we can meet him again someday.

Thomas Farand Sugarland, Tx.
Dear Devard and family,

Devard, what is there I can possibly say except I love you guys and I have been praying for you guys and mourning since I heard the news. We always were good friends and this was a terrible tragedy and I feel for you and the whole family. I, along with Mark and Sean and Terrel and Robbie and others have been grieving and praying for you, our good friend, and your family. There is nothing I cansay that will ease the pain. It will take time and prayer and support from loved ones. I love you so much Devard and me, along with every one up here, will always be there if you need anything at all. We’ve known each other a long time and you and Devaughn are truly two of the most special people I have ever met and I am proud to call you my friends. We’ll all miss Devaughn, and although he should never have been taken out of this world this soon he is now in heaven walking with Jesus and that is something we all long to be able to do. I have wept for him, but we will see him again and he will be waiting for us in heaven when we can one day rejoice and be with him again. I have been, and will continue to be, praying for you guys. I know this is extremely hard to bear, but God does these things for a reason, and it is for us to see why it was done. Maybe Devaughn was needed more in heaven than here on this feeble planet. And although we do mourn the loss of him here on earth in his human form, I rejoice for he lives eternally now forever with Jesus and the lord in spirit in heaven. I know my letter is long and alittle off at parts, but I too have had extreme difficulty with this tragedy as well. I love you guys, always have and always will, I just want you to know I will always be there if you need a shoulder to cry on. Be strong Devard this the toughest thing you’ll probably in your life, and this is the time when you nee God the most. Cling to him for guidance and help, please do not push him away. I love you guys and I will continue to pray for you and your family. God Bless you all.

Thomas Farrand

P.S. Jesus loves us all and carries us all through our hardest times.

Florida State Class of 1999
Yo, this is for my dawg DeVaughn Darling!! Who is now in a place better than
here, and somewhere-that’s he’ll never have to worry bout
“finishing the drill!!”

Are thoughts, love, and prayer all and only for the family-but most
of all, to a teammate-who now can be with us and to a teammate
who can’t be with someone special to him!!

Nothing can make this situation better, but DeVaughn Darling will
be a Seminole for life-and forever the Seminole will be in him!!

Florida State
Class of 1999

Rowland Stuart, Freeport,Bahamas
We in the Bahamas are deeply sadden by the passing of young Devaughn Darling sudden death, we offer are prayers to the family . We in the Bahamas were expecting great things from the Darling Twins,and will continue to support.

Palm Beach Gardens, Fl
Heavenly Father, by your grace we are saved, and we give you thanks for that. I ask that in the midst of this tragic time, your peace and comfort will surround and protect the Darling family. I ask that they find solace in extend thoughts and concerns they receive from across the nation and world. For the remainder of the team and coaching staff, I ask for grace to press on, to focus on eternal things before material, and to know the true value of winning. May we all learn the importance of being ready to “play the game” of life and death when the whistle blows. I ask you to give the right words to Coach Bowden as he ministers to the Darling family. May all of us through the tears, see Jesus. In whose name I ask these things. Amen

Ereoshi McPhee:Nassau, Bahamas
“For this God is our God for ever and ever:he will be your guide and comfort even in the midst of death.”
Remember that:
“Earth has no sorrow that Heaven cannot cure.”
Its hard for me to believe that Devaughn is gone. I constantly think to myself how, why, he was too young to die, and he had such a promising future. I still vividly remember the twin brothers who lived around the corner from me. Every evening we would play together. Hour upon Hours we would spend at my house trying to play atari. Or the laughter of Devaughn and Davard when my father and I went jogging every morning. I loved and enjoyed their company. Even at school the twins were well loved. They were smart, athletic and always were the lady’s men. They were respected not only by their peers but also by their teachers, being well beyond their years.

This is how I remember Devaughn. He was one to make others smile, dedicated to his goals, and willing to help others at all cost. I am blessed and thankful that I have had the opportunity for him to impart in my life. I never knew Devaugh, the football player. However, I know Devaughn the runner, the intellect, the classmate, the childhood playmate and DEVAUGHN THE FRIEND. These are the memories that flood my mind and break my heart as I reflect on the tragic and untimely death of Devaughn. Nevertheless, Davard I kept abreast of both of your professional careers, and often inquired about the both of you. My ears always perked up when Phil Smith mentioned your names during the sporting news.

Davard, the bond between you and your brother was like none other I have ever seen. Allways remember no matter how much you love him Jesus loves him the best. My heart goes out to you, and I will continue to keep you in my prayers. The graduating class of 1994, Nassau Christian Academy is shocked and mummified as they walk through the yard of the College of The Bahamas. On behalf of my family, I extend our sincerest sympathy to you Davard, your mom, Wendy, your dad, Dennis Sr., your brother, Dennis Jr. and your sister, Stacy. May God continue to sustain you in this your hour of bereavement.
Ereoshi Mcphee
N.C.A. class of 1994

Palm Beach Gardens, Fl
Just one more play, dear Lord, and I promise I’ll be ready.

Dano – Woodbury, MN
To Devard, the Darling family, and Devaughn’s teammates and friends I extend my deepest sympathy and will pray for you. Find strength in one another. I was absolutely heartbroken to hear the news. Devaughn will live on in our memories.

Buddy- Sugar Land, TX
In loving memory of D.D. #53
I remember as if it were yesterday you and your brother asking me for rides home and to parties. The time that I was blessed to have D.D. in my life we shared a lot of great times and memories together. P.S. Devard-Keep your head up and keep your brothers dreams and aspirations alive through you.
Love Always,
James (Buddy) Travis

Matt Smith Glenpool OKlahoma
My family and I will pray for him and his family though this time and time in the future good luck to his brother. It would be good if his brother follows in his foot steps. GO Noles

As the great star that you are you shine above us,DEVAUGHN.My prayers and thoughts go out to the Darling family,especially Devard.We will all miss you here at Austin High School.You set a great example for the whole community.As I see your picture in the feild house everyday it reminds me of how an incredible person and athlete you are,you will never be forgotten and you will always have a place in my heart.Devard,keep your head up, remember the goals you set out to do and accoplish them.You will be in my prayers and I know that GOD will guide you through your time in need.


Crystal Reyes- Sugar Land, TX
I remember all those times we spent together during football and track seasons. Most of it was during those long track meets and practices. We use to talk about everything. Nothing in this world can take away all those laughs we shared. Both you and your brothers hard work and dedication was an inspiration to all. When I heard of this news, I was nothing else but shocked, even still it’s hard to believe such a great loss. One thing I do know is that you left this world doing what you loved best, not many people can say that. My thoughts are with Devard’s family and friends. may god bless you all, and help to heal your hearts and souls. I love you Devaughn.

Charlotte, N.C.
As Richard Petty stated, never put a Question Mark (?) where GOD has put a “PERIOD”(.) Our prayers are with the family.

Benji, Sherietta, BJ and Breelin Motte

Daryl Levine, Tallahassee, FL
Darling Family,
Thank you for bringing such a wonderful soul into this world. I was one of the fortunate to know Davaughn and he always was so happy and loved his Seminole Family. May God keep him and watch over him. Rest in Peace #53

Daryl Levine

Andrea Aranha ( Lee University Cleveland, TN) from the Bahamas
I can’t begin to understand the pain that you feel. My heart is heavy and my eyes are filled with tears. Our God, we will never fully understand, but he does things that we sometimes hate, but we have to trust in him anyway and not lean on our own understanding. I’m praying for you. My words can’t and won’t ease your pain, but do believe that Jesus loves you.


Chris Scantlin Sugarland, Texas
Devaughn Darling was such a awesome person. I knew him on and off the football field, and he was somebody to always look up to.Devard, i don’t know if you will ever read this but if you do, i am sorry for your loss, Be strong.
He will always be there for you, as well everybody back home. our prayers are with you.

Harvey Hoboken, New Jersey

Marissa De Los Santos Houston, Texas
you will always be in my prayers and heart. i hope you know who much you are loved!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Donald Nguyen, Austin, Texas (The University of Texas)
DeVaughn i remember the great times that we had while we were in high school. The many times that we joked and laughed during class. The time you gave me the name “Chicken Wang”. You showed everyone your great personality as well as your unparalled athletic ability and you will truly be missed. Devard, be strong and God will guide you through this painful tragedy. You are in my prayers.

Donald Nguyen
Stephen F. Austin High School
Class of 2000

Derek Flowers Jr. Nassau, Bahamas
To All members of the Darling family, on behalf of the Flowers family I just want you all to know that we morn the lost of a loving son to his parents, and a good friend for myself personally. Just know that your family is in my heart and prayers.

Love Derek Flowers Jr. and Family

Cissy Burch Pensacola, Fla.
My thoughts and my prayers are with the family of this fine young man. rely on God to see you through this trying time. the peace of the lord be with you always.

Rob – Tampa, Fla.
God Bless you Devaughn.

Webb family, Katy, Texas
We have enjoyed following the highlights of the Darling twins the past few years through high school and on to FSU. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. May God give you strength and comfort at this difficult time. Please know that many are praying for you.

Kathy Brannon, Orange Park, Florida
All Seminoles everywhere are saddened by the loss of Devaughn Darling. My prayers and thoughts are with his brother, his parents, his teammates, his coaches, and all those who knew and loved him. My prayers are also with those in his hometown in Texas who are grieving over the loss of this young man. Remember what Devaughn accomplished in his short time with us and honor his memory. In A. E. Houseman’s poem, “To an Athlete Dying Young”, he said:
The time you won your town the race
We chaired you through the marketplace:
Man and boy stood cheering by,
And home we brought you shoulder-high.

To-day, the road all runners come,
Shoulder-high we bring you home,
And set you at your threshold down,
Townsman of a stiller town.

God speed, Devaughn.

Garrett Keith Tuscaloosa/Florence, AL
All my thoughts and prayers are with the Darling family. As a college football player myself, I can not imagine how it would be to try and continue on with such a tremendous loss. And as a huge FSU fan, I know my season next year will be dedicated to a seminole lost. May God bless you.

Angie Annis; Richmond, TX
My deepest sympathy goes out to the Darling family. Devaughn was such an outstanding person. He reached out and touched many peoples lives. He was such an awesome person through out our highschool years, and he will never be forgotten. Devard, keep you head up and your hopes high. My prayers go out to you all.

Jerry Lacefield (Offutt AFB, Nebraska; Liberty, TX)
My prayers go out to the family of Devaughn Darling. May God be with you in this time of despair. Do not hate God for this, for he has his reasons for Devaughn to sit next to him in Heaven. Again my prayers go out to Devaughn and his family. We all will miss him greatly.

Geoffrey (Memphis,TN)
I just want to say that I was crushed when I heard about it. I just want to send my prayers to the family.

Shaun Kemp (El Segundo,CA)
I would like to say that my thoughts and prayers go out to this young mans family and team mates. This is a truly tradgic lost.

Harry Cane – Miami, FL
There are no words for something like this. You can live with the death of an elderly loved one who got to experience all that life has to offer. The passing of a talented and gifted 18 year old man is wrong and has me questioning our existence. How many murderers and killers rot in prison until they are 90 years old? Too many. In the meantime heroes like Dale Earnhardt, Walter Payton and up and comers like Devaughn Darling and Cole Pittman are snatched from this world too quickly.

As a lifelong Miami Hurricanes fan, I take a lot of pride in hating the Noles. I love the rivalry and love seeing them lose — but not like this. No one deserves a loss like this. Today it’s not about Miami vs. Florida State. It is about college football players, coaches and fans mourning together and coping with these tragic events. Let’s honor Devaughn and Cole’s memory today and in the 2001 season.

Chris Wells Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Our thoughts and prayers or with the Darling family. We mourn the loss of the Darling’s loved one because we are truly all one big family. From the Seminole fans in Baton Rouge, we love ya’ll, and we will be praying for ya’ll.

With deepest sympathy,
Your brother,

Shaun Hussein- Texas Tech
Sometimes the worst things happen to the best people. Devaughn was everyone’s hero, and friend. Everyone who had the pleasure of knowing him is truly blessed. Devaughn, i love you and you will always have a place in my heart. I know that I will spend my days trying to be as good of a man as you were. My prayers go out to all of his family. Devard, be strong and know that we are all thinking of you at this time of tragedy.

David Hernandez Immokalee, Fl
I pray to god that his family, and friends always keep him in their minds. I also pray for the FSU football team to come together and remember their friend.

Honsing (Toronto, Ontario, CANADA)
My thoughts and prayers go out to the Darling family. I am a big seminole fan and it saddened me greatly when this incident occured. We will all remember Devaughn as a great athlete but even a better person.

Nic Aguero Miami, FL
I have been a FSU football fan all of my life. People think I am too young even though I am on ly 12 to say this but I think it is true, I think that Devaughn had a hole lot of potential for the next seasons. I’ll miss you and I’ll pray for you.

Your Fan,
Nic Aguero

Kevin M. Jones (Austin, TX)
As an FSU graduate now working in the athletic department at the Univ. of Texas, we share in your loss with the loss of one of our own players. Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with the Darling family, the FSU football family, and the campus as a whole. We will truly miss two wonderful young men, Devaughn Darling and Cole Pittman.

Karl Sessler, Coral Springs, Florida
I know reason why you have gone from us . . .
God had a team and He had only one position available left to fill, so he thought long and hard on who would fill such large shoes, so he chose YOU!
We all know that God picked THE BEST!
We will miss you!
-The Sessler Family

Terry, Winter Park, FL
I can think of nothing more devastating than the loss of a son or a sibling. Peace be with you all.

Kioshi G Smith Cols, Ohio

The LaPlantes, Bradenton, FL
You are in our thoughts and prayers, Devaughn. And we grieve for your family, friends and teammates. Yet, in this time of sadness, we should all remember how fortunate we have been to have had you, although for such a short time. And to know that you are in a much better place now, keeping watch over those you love. God Bless.

Greg Pearce (College Station, Texas)
I had the opportunity to play ball with the twins for five years. I was always the quarterback and Devaughn was the big guy we gave the ball to, or watched him stop the other teams offense. He was the one everyone looked up to on and especially off the field. He was a true friend and would do anything for anyone and will continue to do so from up above. Devaughn and Devard were a very big part of my life, my family, and everyone that knew them. That is just how they are.
Devard, Buddy keep your head up and keep gonig strong. My families’ thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Love Always,
Pearce #12

T. Boyea, Dallas, TX
I was just reading the news on AOL and I read the story (I am from Florida) and it caught my eye. I am only 20 years old and I have lost a son, and all I can say is Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not to your Own understanding. Often people tend to ponder on the question “WHY?” But believe that God has your best interest at hand, I know for a while I thought that I wouldn’t be able to make it, but I leaned on God’s unchanging hand and he brought me through. I know that he can do the same for you if you just trust in him and lean on him in your time of need. I will continue to keep you and your family in my prayers. You will make it, and you will be better person because of it. God Bless.

Dear Wendy, Devard, your special family and all whose lives you touch,

Know that you are in the daily prayers of many friends and those you have not met.

Devaughn continues to be a spirit moving among us.

We certainly enjoyed his great physical gifts. But the enduring gifts we received from him are those given by you: a constant love of God, family and friends. Wisdom to maintain a balanced life. Unselfishness and loyalty. Good humor. Quiet confidence, determination and a focus on personal goals. Knowing what is right and doing it. Hard work. The special appreciation of a big, juicy steak!

We are thankful for Devaughn’s life and all that he made of it. We are better for his having touched us and will keep a special memory of him in our hearts.

As we have shared so often, we can take comfort in the certainty that God holds each of us in his strong hands. He will never leave us.

Much love,
Sandy & Carleton

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