Middle school football player recovers from temporary paralysis

A family in West Virginia says 14-year-old Hayden Hunt suffered temporary paralysis after getting hit during a junior high school football game. (Source: WSAZ)
Published: Oct. 7, 2022 at 6:27 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - For around eight hours, a middle school football player couldn’t move his arms or legs after getting injured during a game Thursday night.

In one play, 14-year-old Hayden Hunt, is now on a new course after trying to run the ball into the end zone against Poca.

Stopped short of the goal line, he wouldn’t get back up.

“He’s like, Dad, I’m going to score,” Hayden’s father Rick said. “You know as he’s laying in the hospital bed we were talking about the plays, I was showing it back to him. “He said I thought I could get in and then he just lost his footing and then the Poca players hit him in an awkward position.”

Rick said that Hayden, the quarterback for Point Pleasant Junior/Senior High School, couldn’t move for around eight hours.

“Couldn’t hold his arms up, couldn’t hold his legs up, couldn’t move his fingers, couldn’t do anything,” Rick said. “So you wonder, is this how it’s going to be? How is life going to change?”

Rick said when his son was injured, the coaches went over and asked Poca coaches if they had an athletic trainer to look at Hayden. With no athletic trainer on either sideline, he said coaches had to ask if there were any medical professionals in the stands.

Rick said Hayden is now able to move, but won’t be able to return to football this year and is looking at rehab.

His hope is that whether it’s a middle school or high school game, medical personnel will be on-site at all football games in West Virginia.

Rick said Hayden was taken and has since been released from Charleston Area Medical Center.

A bill set to address athletic trainers at high school sporting events has been introduced to the West Virginia Legislature multiple times over the years.

It has never passed, and this year never made it out of its first committee.