Former NFL star's son: Not surprised he had degenerative brain disease

BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — A son of former NFL star Junior Seau (SAY'-ow) says he's not surprised to learn that his father suffered from a degenerative brain disease that is often associated with repeated blows to the head.

Tyler Seau says he's just "kind of angry" that he didn't have "the awareness to help him more." And now, he says, "it is too late."

His father, one of the NFL's best and fiercest players for two decades, shot and killed himself last May.

The National Institutes of Health, in a study released today, said Seau's brain had abnormalities consistent with a disease known as CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy).

Seau joins a list of several dozen football players who were found to have CTE. Boston University's center for the study of the disease reported last month that 34 former pro players and nine others who had played only college ball suffered from CTE.

Two other former NFL players -- Dave Duerson and Ray Easterling -- were found to have had CTE after they killed themselves.

The NFL says it appreciates the cooperation of Seau's family in the NIH study -- and that the finding shows the need for "additional research" on CTE.

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206-c-16-(Ed Donahue, AP correspondent)-"insomnia and depression"-AP correspondent Ed Donahue reports the NIH study looked at Junior Seau's brain. (10 Jan 2013)

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204-v-33-(Ed Donahue, AP correspondent)--A new study says NFL star Junior Seau had a degenerative brain disease when he committed suicide last year. The AP's Ed Donahue reports. (10 Jan 2013)

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APPHOTO NY158: FILE - In this Dec. 7, 2008, file photo, New England Patriots' Junior Seau watches during an NFL football game against the Seattle Seahawks in Seattle. Seau, one of the NFL's best and fiercest players for nearly two decades, had a degenerative brain disease when he committed suicide last May, the National Institutes of Health told The Associated Press on Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File) (7 Dec 2008)

<<APPHOTO NY158 (12/07/08)>>

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