‘Outpouring of love’ following death of Kahuku, Notre Dame football player Kona Schwenke
COURTESY SCOTT TERNA
Kona Schwenke walked with his Notre Dame team prior to a home game against Wake Forest on Nov. 17, 2012. The former Kahuku High and Notre Dame player died in his sleep Sunday morning.
Former Kahuku High and Notre Dame football player Kona Schwenke died in his sleep Sunday morning, according to his father, McKay Schwenke. He was 25.
“We’ve been getting a lot of outpouring of love from all over,” McKay Schwenke said.
No cause of death has been released.
Last week, Kona Schwenke had a tryout with the Atlanta Falcons. He arrived back home in Laie on Friday.
“The Falcons didn’t sign him, but they said they would call him if something came up,” the father said.
Schwenke, a four-year letter-winner and defensive lineman for the Fighting Irish, played in 31 games and started nine in his career (2010-13). He made a career-best 11 tackles in the victory over Navy on Nov. 2, 2013.
He graduated in May 2014 with a degree in anthropology from the College of Arts and Letters, according to the Notre Dame website.
Baltimore Ravens offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley tweeted: “@kschwenke96 was like a big brother to me. He had a great soul and wanted nothing but to be your friend. Rest in Love brother.”
Louis Nix, who was drafted by the Houston Texans in 2014, also wrote on Twitter: “You were my brother, roommate, and one of the best human beings I’ve ever met. You always stayed solid. I LOVE YOU UCE! #RIP #1102Boyz.”
Schwenke was an All-State first-team player in 2009 after helping the Red Raiders advance to the state title game.
At Notre Dame, he was a member of the 2012 team that played in the Bowl Championship Series national championship game, losing to Alabama.
Schwenke went undrafted after his Notre Dame career and signed as a free agent with the Kansas City Chiefs in 2014. He also was on the practice squads of the New England Patriots, New York Jets and Oakland Raiders in 2014.
In 2015, he signed with the Seattle Seahawks, but suffered a torn ACL in his right knee in a preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs. He was placed on the team’s injured reserve list before being waived on Aug. 6, 2016.