The family of Blake Bivens, a Double-A pitcher with the Tampa Bay Rays Double-A affiliate, the Montgomery Biscuits, was murdered late on Tuesday in southern Virginia. Blake Bivens’ wife Emily, infant son Cullen Micah Bivens, and mother-in-law. were allegedly murdered by his 19-year-old brother-in-law Matthew Bernard.
Bernard is the brother of Bivens’ murdered wife, Emily Bivens.
Just an awful tragedy: The wife and child of Blake Bivens, a Double-A pitcher in the Tampa Bay Rays organization, were among three people killed in rural Virginia on Tuesday, sources tell ESPN. Police have charged Bivens' wife's brother with first-degree homicide.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) August 28, 2019
The murders reportedly happened on Tuesday morning at the Bivens’ home on Keeling Drive in Pittsylvania County, Virginia.
A neighbor, who noticed a body in the driveway, called the police. When the police and paramedics arrived at the scene, they found two other bodies in the house and Bernard running through the streets naked and attacking bystanders.
News cameras captured Bernard running naked on the streets. A photo showed him attacking a worker at a nearby Baptist Church.
Officers captured him by wrestling him to the ground after trying unsuccessfully to stop him with mace and tasers.
EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: The suspect in a triple homicide in Pittsylvania County, 19-year-old Matthew Bernard, ran toward @KyleMWilcoxTV & @humphreyWSET while they were at a staging area — he also strangled the church's caretaker.https://t.co/4OVjvg9kkQ pic.twitter.com/cg23z2KIEX
— ABC 13 News – WSET (@ABC13News) August 27, 2019
Tampa Bay Rays have released a statement:
“Our hearts are broken for Blake. We are grieving with him and will support him any way we can.”
The Montgomery Biscuits canceled all games scheduled for Tuesday following news of the tragic incident.
The team, based in Montgomery, Alabama, is a Minor League Baseball team that plays in the Southern League. Montgomery Biscuits are the Double-A affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays.
Blake Bivens is a right-handed pitcher for the Biscuits and a devout Christian. The Rays selected him out of Washington High School in Danville, Virginia, in the fourth round of the 2014 First-Year Player Draft.
Emily Bivens: Who was Blake Bivens’ wife?
Blake Bivens’ Instagram shows that he and Emily married in 2016 and that they have an infant son Cullen Micah Bivens, who marked his first birthday in June.
Emily’s Instagram account is private but the bio page reveals important facts about her, such as that she was a devout Christian.
She described herself as “Follower of Jesus | Blake’s wife and Cullen’s mama…Amazed by His grace.”
According to her Facebook page, she was a “lover of Jesus, wife and mama.”
She was also a photographer and a blogger. She wrote this piece for the Baseball Chapel blog in July.
Their social media pages show that the Bivens were a happy family before tragedy struck. Blake Bivens’ Instagram is dedicated to documenting the milestones in his family life. The account is filled with photos of his wife and son and there are also several photos from their wedding. There is also a photo of their baby’s sonogram and another of the baby as a newborn. One Instagram video shows baby Cullen happily playing.
Emily’s social media accounts show that her life was dedicated to her husband Blake, her baby Cullen, and to Jesus.
Many have been expressing their condolences and showing support for Blake on social media.
A GoFundMe page, titled Emily Bivens Family Fund, has also been set up by a group known as Our Baseball Life to raise funds for Blake. As of writing, the page has raised $15,440.