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Teen football player dies of injuries

Buffalo, N.Y. -- 16-year-old Damon Janes was injured during a helmet to helmet collision at a football game in Chatauqua County Friday night.

He remained in critical condition in intensive care but died of his injuries today. His family released a statement saying: "Damon lost his fight and went to be with the Lord following his injury."

They thanked supporters for prayers and asked for privacy.

Janes was a junior at Brocton Central School. He was running the ball during the game when the collision occurred.

Local doctors said while helmet to helmet collisions are rare, they are usually dangerous and cause devastating injuries to the brain and spine.

Dr. Anthony Petraglia is a neurosurgeon at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

He said, when the players head is down, it exposes his cervical spine and makes it more prone to injury during a collision.

Stephen Lian has been coaching football for 14 years. He said tragedies like this are heartbreaking for coaches, players and families.

Lian told 13 WHAM: "Our hearts go out to his family and the whole situation is tragic. As coaches, it's forefront in our minds. That's why we do safety training, we teach them the right way to tackle, so in the heat of the battle something like this never happens."

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Washington Times