By Lily Belcher
Following the tragic death of Navy SEAL and former FishHawk father of five Brian Bourgeois, FishHawk families and Navy Football Brotherhood are raising money to support Bourgeois’ family. Bourgeois was an active member of the FishHawk community, involved with his kids’ sports teams and supported his wife, Megan, in her involvement with Seeds of Hope.
“He touched everyone that he could touch and everyone that came to the memorial service had a story about Brian,” said Brian McMillin, who was a friend of Bourgeois. “He was so close to so many people.”
While his dedication to his family and community was seen through his involvement in FishHawk sports, Bourgeois’ dedication to his country was evident in his work with the Navy in his 20 years of service. Bourgeois applied to the Naval Academy and played for its football team for four years. He then commissioned as an officer in the Navy before applying to Navy SEAL school in Virginia. Bourgeois was named Commanding Officer of SEAL Team Eight, responsible for leading around 250 SEALs.
“This guy had the busiest job out of [the United States Special Operations Command] and yet he still made time for his wife and his kids and made time for his community,” said McMillin.
McMillin shared that when one of Bourgeois’ neighbors was ill, he visited the family and helped them with some home repairs, something McMillin said was not surprising coming from Bourgeois, who often helped his neighbors and the FishHawk community.
“This guy was just a different guy … there’s only a few SEAL teams in the world and he went to Virginia Beach not knowing if they would name him a team commander, and they did. Up there, he commanded almost 250 people [in] the last year that he took command.”
Navy Football Brotherhood reached out to McMillin to organize a donation for Bourgeois’ family following his death. Bourgeois had recently attended its alumni game in the fall and maintained a close relationship with his former teammates.
“Ultimately,” said McMillin, “all these people, and all these donations, just want to make it to where Megan … is just able to continue what they knew as normal.”
To donate to help Bourgeois’ family, visit Navy Football Brotherhood’s Facebook page @NavyFootballBrotherhood.