KENNER, LA. - Officials have confirmed that the body pulled out of the Mississippi River is that of Brian Reed, brother of NFL star Ed Reed.
Brian Reed had been missing since going in to the river in an effort to avoid police on January 7.
Since that time, Reed's family had been hoping for closure by finding his body, enlisting the aid of a private search firm, which came up with some results over the weekend.
The search for what was believed to be Brian Reed's body hit a few snags but ended earlier this week.
"He just was a good kid. He had a son, you know, who he cherished and loved," said Ed Reed.
However, Reed described some of the tough times his brother dealt with leading up to his death.
He said Brian had been battling mental health issues, something his parents were becoming increasingly concerned about in recent weeks.
"He was on medication actually, and, being that they knew something was going on, that was the reason why they were seeking to get him help," Reed said.
Jan. 7, his parents called authorities after Brian drove off in a family vehicle. A deputy, who actually knew Brian, saw him on the side of the road where the car had run out of gas.
St. Charles Sheriff Greg Champagne said, as the deputy tried to talk to Reed and pat him down, he took off.
"Ran over the levee and, again for reasons that only Brian would know, he chose to go into the river,” Champagne said. “The closest the deputy got to him at any point after he was originally with him on the side of the road was 50 to 60 yards."
For more than two weeks, search crews scoured the Mississippi River near the St. Charles / Jefferson Parish line where Brian Reed went in.
Tuesday afternoon, as officials prepared to call the effort off, crews made the grim discovery.
"We were five minutes away from the point where we just thought that we were gonna be unsuccessful, and the thought of breaking the news to the Reed family was at hand when the diver located Brian's body," Champagne said.
It’s a sad ending for the family, but Ed Reed believes his brother is now in a better place.
"Maybe he was dealing with something and having more pain than we ever know, that made him make that decision or pushed him to make that decision," he said.
An autopsy is scheduled for Thursday in Jefferson Parish.