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Vontae Davis' death: all about his wife, NFL star brother, and their complicated family history

The former Miami Dolphins cornerback was found dead aged 35 in a South Florida home

Vontae Davis and Megan Harpe arrive at The Playboy Party during Super Bowl Weekend on February 5, 2016 in San Francisco, California
Beatriz Colon
Beatriz Colon - New York
Online News WriterNew York
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The NFL world is mourning the passing of former cornerback Vontae Davis, who passed away aged 35 on Monday, April 1.

Before his retirement in 2018, he played for the Miami Dolphins, Indianapolis Colts, and Buffalo Bills after he was first drafted in 2009, and went viral when he announced his retirement in the middle of a game. The NFL as well as his previous three teams all paid tribute in separate statements, with the NFL writing: "The NFL is heartbroken to hear about the passing of Vontae Davis. Our thoughts are with his family and loved ones."

Below, catch up on what we know about the late athlete's sudden death, as well as details of his family life and wife Megan Harpe.

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What happened?

On Monday, Vontae was found dead in a home in South Florida, which belongs to his grandmother, Adaline Davis.

According to the Davie Police Department, there is no indication of foul play, however the Broward County medical examiner's office is actively investigating the death.

Prior to his passing, Vontae was relatively active on Instagram, and frequently promoted his company, Davis Hospitality Group, a luxury transportation service. In his last post from March 25, he promoted his new children's book, The Middle School Rules of Vontae Davis, and wrote: "Excited to share my journey from DC to where I am today through my signed children's book! Packed with invaluable life lessons and gratitude for my support system."

Vontae Davis and wife Megan Harpe at the 2017 All-Star Bash sponsored by Captain Morgan during MLB All-Star Week Miami on July 9, 2017 in Miami Beach, Florida© Getty
Vontae and his wife in 2017

Who was Vontae Davis married to?

Vontae was married to Megan Harpe, a lawyer with a focus in family law, and they were together for over ten years.

Though later based in Florida, the pair met in Washington D.C. – where Vontae was from – and got engaged in 2013. They tied the knot in 2015 at the popular St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort in Puerto Rico's east coast. There are few glimpses of Vontae's family life on his social media, and it's unclear whether they had children together.

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According to Megan's profile on her law firm's website, she attended Loyola University Maryland, where she studied political science and sociology, and later went to law school at the University of Illinois, where she further developed her skills and passion for family law and child advocacy.

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Are Vernon and Vontae Davis related?

When Vontae pursued a career in the NFL, he was following in the footsteps of his older brother, Vernon Davis. Vernon, 40, was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in 2006, and later also played for the Denver Broncos and Washington Commanders before his retirement in 2020.

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In June of last year, Vontae shared a photo on Instagram of his brother and the three kids he shares with wife Janel Horne, and wrote: "Watching my brother, @vernondavis85 being a father is like watching an artist perfect his masterpiece. His strength defines them, his love shapes them. An incredible father, and a phenomenal man. Salute to you, champ!"

Vontae Davis and Vernon Davis attend the launch of New Tide Plus Febreze Freshness Sport at The Recreation Deck at The W South Beach on February 5, 2010 in Miami Beach, Florida© Getty
The Davis brothers in 2010

The Davis' complicated family history

Before his death, Vontae had regularly opened up about his difficult upbringing. He previously told CNN: "I come from very humble beginnings," adding: "My mother was addicted to drugs, my father an alcoholic. I grew up in some very traumatic situations. I witnessed my father being shot multiple times by his brother. And when you come out of situations like that, you're just not considered a quitter."

He also told the Daily Mail in 2021: "My grandmother raised my six siblings and I. We grew up in a three-bedroom home in Washington, DC. My mom was always on drugs. My dad was never around."

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Among Vontae and Vernon's siblings is Michael, who in 2012, at the time aged 19, was charged with first-degree murder after he was accused of hitting and killing a 66-year-old man with a hammer.

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He was suspected of other similar incidents and had various charges against him, however he was later declared incompetent to stand trial and was subsequently admitted into a psychiatric hospital.

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