The Penn State family suffered a tragic loss on Thursday, as former Nittany Lion offensive lineman Adam Gress died following a fall in which he hit his head, according to Lions247. He was 26.
Gress came to Penn State in the class of 2009 as a three-star recruit by way of West Mifflin, Pa. His most notable on-field performance came during his senior and redshirt-senior campaigns in 2012 and 2013. He was a frequent contributor in 2012 and a starter along the line in 2013.
But beyond his on-field performance, the man known as "Sasquatch" was a key player in holding Penn State together following the NCAA sanctions in 2012. One of Gress' former teammates, defensive back Stephon Morris, credited him with helping to "restore the roar" in the program.
So sadden / heart broken to hear the news about Adam Gress. Not only was he a great teammate but an awesome friend. Adam was in the 2009 recruiting class and was a big component in helping restore the roar back in 2012. Gress I love you man this one hurts to the core. #WeAre— Stephon Morris (@Morr12S) December 22, 2017
Additionally, Gress was an officer for Uplifting Athletes. As Scott Shirley, the founder of the organization, told Lions247, Gress' importance to the program extended off the field.
“Adam always held a special place in my heart because he was a talented football player with a unique combination of intelligence, compassion ... and goofiness,” Shirley said. “He was a great representative of Penn State football both on and off the field at a time when the Nittany Nation needed it the most. I hope that he always knew how beloved he was by everyone who knew him.”
After his playing career came to an end, Gress began working in construction in Pittsburgh. He was engaged and set to be married in 2018.
All of us at Roar Lions Roar would like to extend our sincerest condolences to Gress' family and friends.