Posted September 16, 2013

High-school football player Damon Janes dies after helmet-to-helmet collision

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A 16-year-old high school football player has died in a Buffalo hospital after being knocked unconscious by a helmet-to-helmet collision in a game last Friday, The Buffalo News reported Monday.

Damon Janes, a junior running back on the Westfield/Brocton High team, died Monday in Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo, according to the report.

In a statement, Janes’ parents expressed their “gratitude to those who have supported and prayed for Damon and his family.”

Here is the full statement released by his parents and family, according to WKBW:

“Damon W. Janes, 16, a Junior who attended Brocton Central School, lost his fight and went to be with the Lord following his injury resulting from helmet-to-helmet collision during a Westfield/Brocton varsity football game.

His parents wish to express their gratitude to those who have supported and prayed for Damon and his family, and continue to request that their privacy be respected at this time.”

Janes’ death marks the second time in less than a month that a high-school player has died from injuries suffered on the field. In mid-August, De’Antre Turman, a 16-year-old junior at Creekside High School in Fairburn, Ga., fractured a vertebrae in his upper spinal cord during a scrimmage.

According to the Annual Survey of Football Injury Research prepared by the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research at the University of North Carolina, there were 25 fatal injuries to high school football players in the U.S. between 2003 and 2013.


11 comments
Thunderbob
Thunderbob

With all the padding made to protect, and a helmet made to absorb shock from hits couple that with player launching themselves at opponents to get that spectacular tackle, leading with a helmet, I believe we should scrape the plastic, super duper helmet for leather helmets!  you could put face protection on there, but there would be far less launches, and a whole lot less helmet to helmet contract!  Bottom line, football is on it's way out!

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

As casually as we treat death in America I doubt if this tragedy will change anything. Kids dying like this barely causes a ripple any longer. I'm not pretending I have the answer here, there may be none in such cases short of outlawing the game altogether, and no one (almost no one) really wants that. But it does seem we need to examine how the game is played starting with the youngest players and work right on up to the pros. If not we should stop the hypocrisy over 'safety'. Football is a very violent game. We glorify that violence. Until that culture changes not much else will.

carjax1202
carjax1202

Very sad story indeed.  Unfortunately this is football and injuries are part of the game.  Freak accidents like this happen and will continue to happen, it's sad but true.  Today we have a game that is bigger and faster...but, with all the equipment advances...how does this keep happening?  Today the media has taken this subject to another level...it's a focus...it takes away from the game.  The rule changes are ruining football as we know it, and they just might be hurting the players in the long run....not going full speed...keeping the head up which in turn could cause spin injuries.  Lowering the head is an immediate reaction...good luck with changing the mind set.

JimSaunders
JimSaunders

sad, horrible news..peace to his family

Sulkaman
Sulkaman

What a tragic story and it hits home.  I'm a father. I have a son that plays football. He loves the game and I love watching him love it.  I can't imagine going through what this family went through.  Let's all hope they find peace. And let's hope the young man that hit him doesn't let this break his spirit. Sadly these things are going to happen and there isn't much you can do about it.

haluska
haluska

@Thunderbob I almost agree. What would happen if football players didn't wear any helmets? I say get rid of helmets and you'll get rid of most of the head related injuries. No ear protection, no face mask, no nothing.

Kyle Spillman
Kyle Spillman

@carjax1202 when you lower your head your actually aligning the spine so its more dangerous to lower your head, when i played they always told me keep your head up and they taught how to tackle correctly... too many people these days are trying to launch themselves head first for the big hits and thats when you get hurt 

jeffrey.a.tyler
jeffrey.a.tyler

@Kyle Spillman @carjax1202 Finally a comment that is neither "well, there's always injuries and that's just part of the game" nor it is "let's outlaw football."  While I'm more in the camp of the later, I know that won't happen, so maybe it's time for coaches to learn more and teach the game with more thought about kids' health than how to tackle or run over an opponent.  If we keep things as they are it will be neither good for our kids nor for the game.