Vigil held for injured HS football player

Cole Brake

October 12, 2010 8:28:56 AM PDT
Hundreds of people gathered Monday to pray for a Rocky Mount Academy high school football player who was left paralyzed after a game Friday night.A tackle left Colt Brake unable to move. He injured his spinal cord, crushing his C-4, fracturing his C-5 vertebrae.

Brake's condition has been improving while at Pitt Memorial's ICU. However, the 16-year-old's family says he still has a long way to go.

"It's very heartbreaking," Brake's aunt Marie Chapman said. "His family is really hurting. I don't want to see him in this situation."

She says what is helping, is the hundreds of prayers that have been pouring in from family, friends and strangers.

On Monday evening, over 500 people gathered at Brake's high school to hold a vigil for him and place yellow ribbons around the campus.

There is also a "Support Group for Colt Brake" on Facebook and a "Keep Colt Brake With You" page that are filled with prayers and well wishes.

Another website on CarePages has been set up for Brake that describes his injuries and provides updates from the family, along with dozens of more messages (the page requires visitors to create a user name and password).

Brake's aunt says she believes those prayers are working, based on what a nurse has told her since the accident.

"She did see that he could lift his shoulders and move his arms," Chapman said. "She could see the muscles ... working. We feel like at least to his elbows there's functioning going on there. As far as I know no movement from the chest down yet." "I pray and everybody is praying for him," she added. "I believe the Lord will touch him and heal him. I really do."

A spinal cord injury specialist, who has not treated Brake, says he has seen amazing things happen several months, even a year after an injury. He says being a young athlete will help Brake in his recovery.

Brake works afterschool at the an Autobell Carwash.

"Colt's a cool kid, always pretty outgoing, always running around," Brake's friend Micah Shearin said. "God will make it work, just believing for a miracle."

A fund has been established to help offset expenses for Brake and his family.

Make checks payable to:
Colt Brake Fund
c/o RBC Centura Bank
2340 Sunset Avenue
Rocky Mount, NC 27804

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