Star High School Football Player Suffers Brain Injury During Game

Lane Tech senior Drew Williams hospitalized in critical condition

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A promising high school football player is fighting for his life. Lane Tech's Drew Williams collapsed during Friday's game versus Dunbar due to a severe brain injury and is in critical condition at a local hospital. Rob Elgas reports. (Published Tuesday, Oct 8, 2013)

    A promising Chicago high school football player continued to fight for his life Wednesday morning, nearly a week after a brain injury caused him to collapse during a game.

    Lane Tech senior Drew Williams, who collapsed during last Friday's game against Dunbar Vocational High School due to what doctors say is a severe brain injury, is in critical condition and a coma at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn.

    The 17-year-old senior was a star in every sport he played, but something went wrong on the field last week. Witnesses said Williams began suffering seizures on the field.

    "The circumstances -- I don't know if it's something that could have been prevented. He got hit hard and that's part of football," family friend Art Mora said.

    Doctors had to remove part of Williams' skull to relieve swelling.

    One of Williams' coaches called the student a "gem" of a kid and a star in every sport he played.

    Mayor Rahm Emanuel and CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett have both called the family to express support.

    "I'm still trying to wrap my mind around the whole thing. It's just surreal," Mora said. "Hopefully some sort of miracle happens. Drew can come back from this."

    In addition to football, Williams also played on the high school baseball and had aspirations to play college football.

    The family has set up a Facebook page to provide updates on Williams' condition. An account on GoFundMe.com is collecting donations for the teen's recovery fund.