Northwestern State’s Ronnie Caldwell dies in shooting | #schoolsaftey

ESPNOct 12, 2023, 04:40 PM ET2 Minute Read

Ronnie Caldwell, a junior safety on the Northwestern State football team, died Thursday morning from injuries suffered when he was shot multiple times, police in Natchitoches, Louisiana, said.

Caldwell was 21.

Northwestern State, which competes in the Southland Conference, canceled its game Saturday at Nicholls as a result of Caldwell’s death.

“Ronnie Caldwell was a young man who had a bright future ahead of him on or off the football field,” coach Brad Laird said as part of a statement. “He was our voice in the locker room. When Ronnie spoke, others listened. The respect our football team had for Ronnie was evident. He did not play a snap this year because of an injury, but his voice resonated with every member of our team from the first player to the 115th on our roster.

“Our hearts are broken and ache for Ronnie’s family and friends. His loss will be felt here at Northwestern State, in Natchitoches and in his home. We will treasure the time we spent with Ronnie and the memories we made, and we will hold him and his family in our hearts as we attempt to move forward in the days and weeks ahead.”

Caldwell transferred to Northwestern State from Tyler (Texas) Junior College after the 2021 season. According to the school, Caldwell, who was from Texas, appeared in all 11 games last season and finished seventh on the team in tackles before injuries kept him off the field through the Demons’ five games this fall.

The school said a decision on the remaining games on Northwestern State’s schedule will be made later.

The Natchitoches Police Department said it responded to the call of a shooting early Thursday morning and found Caldwell the victim of multiple gunshot wounds, according to local reports. The case remains under investigation.

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