Great Story: High School Football Team Picks Up Teammate Mourning The Loss Of His Father (Video)
You’re going to want to get a couple of tissues and keep them handy while you read this story. It’s good enough to bring a tear to the eye of even the most cynical sports fan.
What’s it about? Oh, just a high school football team doing whatever it takes to raise the spirits of a teammate during a time of great sorrow.
You see, on October 3 in St. Clairsville, Ohio, a man named Paul Thompson suffered a stroke in his bathroom while his three sons were getting ready for school. Paramedics arrived and took him to the hospital with his wife, Daniele, but there was nothing they could do. He was pronounced dead at the age of 44.
Obviously, the family was in a state of shock. Logan Thompson, a freshman at St. Clairsville High and the family’s oldest son, asked his grieving mother if it was okay it he went to school that day.
Understanding that he just needed something to take his mind off the tragedy, and that he didn’t need to be around while she planned his father’s funeral, Daniele said yes. And so Logan went to school that day, where he slowly but surely told all his teachers and friends what had happened earlier that morning.
He also told Brett McLean, the varsity football coach.
McLean didn’t know Thompson or his family very well yet. Thompson was only on the Freshman football team, and even though, at St. Clairsville High, every football player, Freshman through Varsity, dresses for the Varsity games, the teams all practice separately.
Still, McLean and his coaching staff found it very difficult to prepare for that week’s game against Edison High, with their thoughts returning constantly to what Logan and his family were going through. But when Logan Thompson informed the team that he planned on dressing for the Varsity game on Friday, October 5, because he knew that’s what his dad—his biggest fan—would have wanted? Well, they knew they had to do something. So they came up with a plan.
What was that plan? To get Thompson into his very first varsity game, then get him his very first varsity touchdown.
So with 6 minutes to go in the 4th quarter and St. Clairsvill enjoying a comfortable lead, the team’s running back—a 2014 Michigan recruit named Michael Ferns—broke free for what should have been a touchdown. However, instead of running it into the end zone, he stepped out of bounds at the one-yard line. Then the coach called for Thompson—a linebacker, normally—put his hands on his shoulders, and told him to “follow Ferns’ big butt into the end zone.”
That’s exactly what he did.
Take a look:
Logan’s mom wasn’t in the stands that night like she normally would be. However, his 13-year-old brother Landen was, and when he texted his mom that Logan scored a touchdown, she thought it was a joke. But it wasn’t. And when Logan got home that night, for a few minutes, the family got to experience something other than heartbreak.
So, are your eyes watery yet?