ORLANDO, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - A video taken just a few weeks ago now stands in stark contrast to the 16-year-old football player bedridden tonight, with a tracheotomy tube, unable to move the lower half of his body, and no definitive prognosis.
DJ Meyers' Dad, Vigil D'Haiti, was at the Fellowship of Christian Athletes camp at Stetson last Tuesday when his son, a safety and wide receiver for the South Lake High School Eagles, made a tackle ending up on top a pile of players, and then fell to the ground hitting his head when one last player jumped on knocking him off.
He was unconscious momentarily.
Vigil says he did not expect the type of damage his son incurred from the impact.
He says, "When he did wake up, he was like, 'I made the tackle!' And then he said, 'I'm stuck!' That's when it hit me."
Eagles' Head Coach Mark Woolum says, "We are hurting but they are rallying around DJ, but there's a sense of excitement. "I'm going to do this for DJ!"
Woolum says his players are now rallying around number 11.
And Myers, a natural leader, is amazingly motivating his teammates while fighting hard to recover.
Facetime pep talks from Myers were common before the tracheotomy.
Erik Quarterman is a volunteer Camp Athletic Trainer and Paramedic.
He says, "This young man has a lot of faith and despite what happened, he has a lot of faith."
Vigil says, "This is not football's fault. No one's fault. This was an accident. If my son was able to speak here right now and you asked if he'd do it all over again, he'd say in a heartbeat."
He goes on, "That boy's faith is abundant. And though mine has wavered from time to time...he's rejuvenated mine."
A GoFundMe account for Myers has been set up.