BMX legend Dave Mirra was found dead in his truck of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound on Thursday afternoon in Greenville, North Carolina, and now officials are suggesting that a brain injury may have caused him to become depressed.
Mirra was discovered in his truck less than a thousand feet from his former high school, after meeting up with a friend.
The 41-year-old BMX legend, who hosted two seasons of Real World/Road Rules Challenge, leaves behind a wife and two daughters.
At a press conference, Friday morning, officials are suggests that head injuries he sustained during his years of BMX riding may have affected his mental health.
Lately, the condition CTE has become a top story in the news with many scientist and researchers looking if there’s a connection between head injuries in sports with issues like depression and dementia.
Depression is a symptom of CTE, this disease can only be diagnosed during an autopsy and multiple football players who have committed suicide have been diagnosed with CTE posthumously.
‘This is a young man…that had a pretty rugged sports career and took a lot of injuries,’ Greenville Mayor Allen Thomas said Friday. ‘You have to give pause and think and wonder, just as we hear about brain trauma in football and other sports and activities, whether that played a factor.’
‘I don’t know if that’s the case but…it really gives pause to think about someone who put his life out there, his body out there, for so many years if that’s something.
‘I hope we’re able to solve that mystery,’ Thomas said, before referencing Junior Seau – a former pro-football linebacker who committed suicide in 2012.
Greenville Police Chief Mark Holtzman said in a press conference that Mira was found dead on the 200 block of Pinewood Road of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound around 4pm, Thursday.
Before his body was found, Mirra posted two Instagram photos of him and his wife and a photo of himself riding his bike with a caption; ‘Rose high school Greenville Nc.’
‘My rock! Thank god,’ wrote Mirra alongside the photo of his wife.
A photo posted by Dave Mirra (@davemirra) on
On Wednesday, Mirra also posted a picture of himself boxing, writing; ‘Fight to win! We all have a battles to fight. Never back down. Love you all. #diewithyourbootson.’
The worlds most famous former pro-skateboarder, Tony Hawk, expressed his sympathy on Mirra and to people struggling with depression on Instagram: ‘Goodbye Dave Mirra, a true pioneer, icon and legend. Thank you for the memories, we are heartbroken.
To those struggling in private: please reach out for help. You are not alone.’
Mirra’s family said that they would appreciate privacy during this very difficult time.
Born in New York, Mirra grew up in Greenville, and became one of the most successful X-Games athletes of all time thanks to his BMX talents.