Tuesday, June 18, 2024

New Jersey high school football player Xavier McClain dies follwing head injury

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New Jersey high school football player Xavier McClain died Wednesday from a sustained head injury that happened during a game a few weeks earlier. The sophomore running back at Linden High School spent some time on life support. 

The incident happened during the second game of the season on Sept. 9. According to NJ.com, McClain suffered the blow when he returned the second-half kickoff. The game was paused and an ambulance came to the sideline to give him medical attention. 

NJ.com described him as a “budding star” and said he broke into the lineup a few times last season when he was just a freshman.

Linden mayor Derek Armstead, who knew him and his family since  McClain was a child, used his platform to ask the Linden community to pray. He gave the unfortunate update on social media on Wednesday night.

“Thank you to all my Linden prayer warriors. Together we prayed for a miracle and hoped for a different outcome. I trust that God knows better. HE needed an angel and decided to call Xavier home to be with HIM. With your prayers, Xavier fought a good fight,” Armstead wrote. 

“Children are supposed to outlive their parents, not the other way around. I asked that you continue to keep the family in your prayers.”

This is the second tragedy for Union County high school football in this month. On Sept. 8, Rahway High School senior Ali Muhammad died on his sleep and was found by his father. He was set to turn 18 years old next month. 

Linden and Rahway played the season opener against each other. Muhammad did not play that game, and died six days later. His funeral was held Sept. 22. 

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