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Dayton Daily News (Ohio)
JACKSON, MISS. — A high school football player in Mississippi died after he broke two vertebrae in his neck.
Jeremiah Williams was injured when he tried to make a tackle during a game on Nov. 2, WJTV reported.
Williams, who played defensive back, broke the C1 and C4 vertebrae, WJTV reported.
Friends still can't believe what happened.
"When he got hit and went down I just thought he was automatically going to get back up," classmate Erick Simmons told WJTV. "Because of the type of player he is. He's just so tough."
Williams was rushed to an area hospital, but almost a week after his injuries, he was taken off a ventilator and died Friday, WAPT reported.
Sunday, the community came out to hold a candlelight vigil in Williams' memory on the same football field where he was hurt.
To help pay for the week-long treatment, a GoFundMe account has been set up, WAPT reported.
Organizers wanted to raise $10,000 but nearly $49,000 has been donated over seven days.
"We know his family is going to have a mountain of medical bills," Errick Simmons, Greenville's Mayor, told WJTV. "He was on the ventilator for a week and he was in ICU."
The mayor also declared Thursday Jeremiah Williams Day. Three of the town's McDonald's restaurants will donate 20% of the sales that day to the family to help pay medical bills, WJTV reported.
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