The tragic duck boat accident that cost 17 men, women and children their lives in Missouri has had an indelible impact on a Kentucky high school football player.
As reported by Lexington ABC affiliate WTVQ, Frederick Douglass (Lexington) football player Jayden Coleman lost nine family members in the tragic accident near Branson. Now, it turns out the only thing which saved Coleman himself may be his own commitment to his sport and teammates.
“Typically this time of year, his family, his extended family, takes a giant trip together, and this year we’re in the middle of camp, so he wanted to stay here for camp,” Douglass football coach Brian Landis told KTVQ. “He didn’t want to miss out on what we were doing here and he wanted to be with his teammates, so fortunately for him, he missed that trip.”
Now Coleman’s teammates and town are rallying around the team to support him through the unspeakable tragedy any way they can. The Frederick Douglass Football Boosters club started a fund to support the Coleman family, and Lexington restaurant City Barbecue has also stepped forward to donate 25 percent of all guest checks until the end of July to the fund.
That won’t necessarily help Coleman and his remaining relatives achieve peace with what happened, but it might make it a little bit easier to afford some of the expenses that will come with multiple funerals and the cost to move on in their lives, however they see fit.
For their part, Coleman’s teammates will be ready for him whenever he feels comfortable returning.
“For Jayden’s sake they’ve done a great job of picking him up and being there for him, and that’s what he needs at this time,” Landis told Lexington CBS affiliate WKYT. “At the end of the day they love coming out and eating barbeque and helping support our guy in need.”