Who Was Fletcher Cox’s Late Elder Brother Shaddrick Cox? How Did He Die?

By NoahPublished on: September 3, 2023 Updated on: January 31, 2024
Birthday October 26, 1980
Birthplace Yazoo City, Mississippi
Death January 5, 2015
Age 34 years
Son T.J.
Brother Fletcher Cox
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Shaddrick Cox, who unfortunately passed away in 2015, is the elder brother to the NFL star Fletcher Cox. Fletcher Cox’s elder brother Shaddrick was more than a brother to him: he was a fatherly figure, his confidant, and his biggest supporter on and off the pitch.

But what took his life? What was his life like before his death? Scroll down to the end to find out.

Key Takeaways:

  • Fletcher Cox’s elder brother Shaddrick Cox was the eldest child of the family.
  • He and his three siblings were raised by their single mom, Malissa Cox.
  • He was like a fatherly figure to his young siblings.
  • Shaddrick was an automotive enthusiast.
  • Shaddrick was a father of two children.
  • He passed away in 2015 from a heart attack.

Fletcher Cox’s Brother Shaddrick Cox’s Early Life

Born on 26 October 1980 in Yazoo City, Mississippi, he was the eldest child born to his parents Melissa Cox and Walter Gainwell Sr. Shaddrick spent his early years in Yazoo County where he also finished high school.

His parents separated from each other when all four of the Cox siblings were still kids. After separating from Shaddrick’s mom Melissa, Walter Sr married the now-late Cynthia Nushelle Johnson-Gainwell.

Fletcher had Three Siblings

He had one brother and two sisters. His younger brother Fletcher Cox, born on December 13, 1990, is a defensive tackle for the Philadelphia Eagles. Fletcher was first drafted by the Eagles in the 2012 NFL Draft. Since then, he has won the Super Bowl with them in the 2017 season and has also been named to Pro Bowl six times.

His two sisters are Nakeia Cox and Fantasia Cox. Nakeia, the older of two, works as a Quality Assurance Engineer at Peco Foods, Canton, Mississippi. The younger Fantasia, who is Fletcher’s twin sister, works at Nassain.

Shaddrick Had A Difficult Childhood

Cox didn’t have a father growing up. His mother Malissa raised him and his siblings all by herself. To earn enough to feed her big family, she worked long hours as a supplier at a Nissan dealership. She worked from 2 PM to 12:30 PM, and thus barely saw her kids. The family lived in a three-bedroom trailer in Mississippi.

In the absence of his father, Shaddrick was the fatherly figure of the family. When his mom was in need, or any of his younger siblings needed help, he stepped up. Nakeia, Fletcher, and Fantasia looked up to him as a big bro.

Malissa Cox Bright with Fletcher Cox
Shaddrick’s mother Malissa Cox Bright and brother Fletcher Cox.

What Was Fletcher Cox’s Brother Shaddrick’s Profession?

Shaddrick used to work as a mechanic from which he used to make his living. From his early childhood, Fletcher was really interested in cars and this led him to become a car repairman.

His brother Fletcher described him as a “car junkie.” What’s more, just sometime before his untimely demise, Shaddrick was looking to buy a 1999 two-door Chevrolet Tahoe. Unfortunately, just before he could drive his favorite car, he died.

How Did Shaddrick Die? His Cause of Death

On January 5th, 2015, Shaddrick was going to buy the 1999 Tahoe when he suffered from a massive heart attack. He was rushed to the nearest hospital where he was put in intensive care. Unfortunately, after a week on January 12th, he took his last breath.

Cox had been suffering from heart issues for several years. He was diagnosed with diabetes and was trying his best to keep his sugar level in check. Nevertheless, he eventually succumbed to the disease.

Shaddrick’s body was buried in Cypress Gardens Cemetery, Yazoo City, Mississippi.

Who Was Shaddrick Cox’s Wife? Did He Have Any Children?

Shaddrick was a married man and a father of two kids. As for his wife’s identity, well, her name has been kept behind closed doors.

Speaking of his kid, his son’s name is T.J. Fletcher Cox, while the name of his daughter is not out in the media.

It was an incredibly difficult moment for Cox’s children after their dad passed away. After Shaddrick’s death, his brother, Fletcher said,

“I know it’s hard for his wife and his [7-year-old son T.J.] especially.”

Thankfully, TJ and his sister have matured since that dreaded day. It wouldn’t be an understatement to say that it is all thanks to their uncle Fletcher who helped them move on. The uncle-nephew pair are really close to each other. TJ calls his Fletcher, ‘Uncle Bugeye’.

His Family Left Devastated

Shaddrick’s demise was a big blow for his loved ones. His son lost his father, and Fletcher lost his brother.

Malissa, his mom, was especially devastated after losing her son so early. She said,

“For me, what happened was devastating, but life goes on. And I feel it’s as though he’s gone but he’s not forgotten. He’s still here in so many ways because he was a lovable person. He was a joyful person. And so once you grow older and realize you have to live life on life’s terms, and that nothing in God’s world happens by mistake, once I grasped that concept, then I deal with whatever happens.”

Fletcher Cox Misses His Elder Brother Shaddrick A Lot

Shaddrick was his brother Fletcher’s confidant, his cheerleader, and a father figure to him. His demise left a big hole in Fletcher’s heart. Fletcher told The Washington Post, “He (Shaddrick) used to always tell me, ‘Eye of the Tiger.’ He used to always text me that.”

NFL Player Fletcher Cox
Shaddrick’s younger brother Fletcher Cox playing for the Philadelphia Eagles.

Still to this day, after the anthem during any Eagles game, Fletcher points to the sky and whispers “I love you, bro.”

Fletcher has done his best to give his niece and nephew what his older brother gave him: a father figure. He brings Shaddrick’s son T.J. to his auto shop whenever he returns home. He also keeps in touch with his nephew T.J. via FaceTime at least a few times per week.

About Author: Noah

Noah is an avid fan of NFL. If there's a game going on, he will watch it. Apart from watching games, he likes writing articles on NFL players, their family and WAGs.