High School Hockey Player Jack Jablonski Paralyzed After Collision on the Ice

Eric BowmanFeatured ColumnistJanuary 3, 2012

Jack Jablonski was a multi-sport athlete for Benilde-St. Margaret in Minnesota, but it was a hit on the ice that forever changed his life.

The junior varsity Red Knights hockey team played in the Holiday Hockey Classic tournament over the weekend, and Jablonski suffered a horrendous hit that left him motionless on the ice. 

According to the Star Tribune, Jablonski was hit into the boards by two defenders, and it has left him paralyzed. 

Jablonski, who is only 16 years old, fractured two bones in his lower neck, and can only slightly move his hands and fingers. 

His coach, Chris McGowan, told the paper that Jablonski is a phenomenal kid. 

"He is a first-class kid.  Definitely one of my favorite players in the program.  It's team-first with him for everything.  He's what I call a very high-end hockey player, too.  And he's got an incredible hockey future ahead of him as well, assuming this all works out."

It's unclear if it will work out, as his parents told the paper that doctors are waiting for the swelling to reduce before they can learn more. 

Jablonski's father called it "a parent's worst nightmare," but went on to say that Jack is doing well. 

"He's in a lot of pain, but his spirits are excellent," the elder Jablonski said.  "He's going to make it through.  He's a fighter.  But we've got a long journey ahead of us."

The family is also thankful the community is giving Jack such great support. 

This is another example that sports are very dangerous, and safety should always come first. 

It was an unfortunate accident, and we wish Jack well and hope he has a great recovery.