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Hernandezs brain donated to sports concussion researchers

BOSTON—Family, not football, dominated Aaron Hernandez’s final hours as a lifer in prison.As the hour of his death approached, the former NFL star chatted on the phone with his longtime fiancée, Shayanna Jenkins-Hernandez. Authorities say the pair stayed on the phone until the 8 p.m. lockdown at the maximum-security prison where he was serving a life sentence for murder.Alone in his cell, the ex-New England Patriots tight end scribbled three notes. He laid them carefully next to a Bible.Then he turned his bedsheet into a noose and hanged himself.Those cryptic details emerged Thursday as authorities ruled Hernandez’s death a suicide and turned his body over to a funeral home so his family could lay him to rest.Article Continued BelowInvestigators wouldn’t say what Hernandez’s handwritten notes said. But they said they were satisfied he died at his own hand, and they said his brain would be donated to sports concussion researchers, ending a brief public dispute over its custody.Authorities said the medical examiner had ruled Hernandez’s cause of death was asphyxia by hanging and investigators had found the notes and Bible in Hernandez’s cell at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Mass. Authorities previously said Hernandez had not left a suicide note and he hadn’t been on suicide watch.“There were no signs of a struggle, and investigators determined that Mr. Hernandez was alone at the time of the hanging,” the Worcester County district attorney’s office said in a statement.

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