Former Notre Dame football player Josh Atkinson has passed away at the age of 25 of undisclosed causes, his family confirmed last night.
Atkinson played defensive back and was a special teams mainstay for the Fighting Irish from 2011-13. He was also a standout track and field competitor at Notre Dame.
Atkinson’s twin brother George III, a running back, played with him at Notre Dame after the two starred together in high school. They are the sons of legendary Oakland Raiders defensive back George Atkinson.
Really awful news. Former Granada High standout Josh Atkinson, son of ex-Raiders star George Atkinson and twin brother of ex-NFL player George III, passed away at age 25. #RaidersNation https://t.co/WZmEHIqoMx pic.twitter.com/GrlOjj9E9c
— Jon Becker (@JonBecker28) January 1, 2019
George Atkinson III shared a heartfelt Instagram message about his brother last night.
“I can’t put into words the pain that comes with losing my twin brother (Joshua Alexander Atkinson) thank you for the love and support please keep Josh in your prayers and respect the space i need to mourn this tragic loss God Bless you all,” he wrote.
Sadly, Atkinson is the third Notre Dame player from his era to pass away recently. Running back Greg Bryant was killed in a shooting in 2016 at the age of 21 while defensive tackle Kona Schwenke passed away unexpectedly in April at the age of 25.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the Atkinson family.