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Rae Carruth’s 16 year old son ‘thriving,’ says grandmother who hopes ex Panther will see boy when he leaves prison Rae Carruth’s 16 year old son ‘thriving,’ says grandmother

BY Amara Grautski

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Updated: Tuesday, November 17, 2015, 12:00 PM

BY Amara Grautski

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Updated: Tuesday, November 17, 2015, 12:00 PM

Chancellor Lee Adams, the son of Rae Carruth whose life almost ended before it began, turned 16 Monday and is a high school student in Charlotte.

The boy who beat the odds lives with his grandmother, Saundra Adams a woman who’s preached forgiveness, not vengeance, since the Panthers first round draft pick hired a hit man to kill her pregnant daughter, so he wouldn’t have to pay child support.

Cherica Adams was 24 years old when she was struck by four bullets and later died in a hospital in 1999. Delivered 10 weeks early by emergency Caesarean section, Chancellor managed to live.

“Chancellor is not just surviving,” his grandmother told the Charlotte Observer. “He is thriving.”

The newspaper took a peek inside the life of Chancellor, who has special needs and cerebral palsy. The loss of blood and oxygen the night Cherica was shot caused permanent brain damage. He mostly uses a walker to get around and can communicate. Chancellor is “able to feed himself some” and dress himself “with minimal assistance,” Adams said.

“I’ve never treated Chancellor like he’s disabled,” she said of her grandson who roots for the Panthers and loves to go horseback riding. “I treat him like he’s ‘abled’ differently.”

Carruth, a wide receiver for Carolina from 1997 to 1999, is still in jail for conspiring to commit murder, but scheduled for release on Oct. 22, 2018. Surprisingly, Adams hopes that the former NFL player will be a part of his son’s life when he gets out.

“The main reason I want Rae and Chancellor to one day have a relationship is because (Chancellor) is his son,” Adams told the paper. “And that’s why I chose early on that I would forgive Rae. Because I don’t feel like I can offer unconditional love to Chancellor if I don’t forgive Rae. That’s his father. It’s a part of him. Chancellor wouldn’t be who he is without Rae. I want them to bond, or at least to meet again.”

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Then Panthers WR Rae Carruth in 1997. (RICK HAVNER/AP)

On Nov. 16, 1999, Carruth and Cherica were going on a date to the movie theater but drove in separate cars. She was tailing him in southeast Charlotte when Carruth suddenly stopped short. When Cherica stopped behind him, another car pulled up alongside her. Brett Watkins, later sentenced to at least 40 years in prison, fired into the BMW.

Cherica was able to make a gasping call to 911, which implicated Carruth. In January 2001, the ex wideout, who still has never publicly admitted any involvement in the crime, was sentenced to at least 18 years and 11 months in prison.

“Right now, Rae is still in denial about his part in Cherica’s murder,” Adams said. “Not that Chancellor would change that. But if anybody were to ever touch Rae’s heart, to make him want to be truthful, I think it would be Chancellor.”

Neither Carruth nor any of his family members has contacted Chancellor or his grandmother, Adams said. “They are all missing out on the wonderful person that is Chancellor Lee Adams.”

Cherica Adams, the girlfriend of Panthers wide receiver Rae Curruth, who was shot and killed in 1999. (AP)

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Chancellor has a basic understanding of why he’s being raised by his grandmother. Adams told him “his mom was shot, and his daddy is in jail because of that, because daddy did a bad thing.” She explained that Carruth “is not a bad person, he just did a bad thing.”
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