Melissa Aaron, the mother of Marshall defensive tackle Larry Aaron, said her son was paralyzed after being hit by stray gunfire at a party on New Year's Eve in Maryland.
"It is in his spine and he has no feeling in his legs," she told Grant Traylor of the Herald-Dispatch. "They can't remove it because they are afraid it could be dangerous and hinder him even more to do so. It is right in the middle of his spine."
"I'm in shock myself, she added. "I'm just numb. It's such a freak accident."
Per his father, Aaron was standing by a wall with his girlfriend when a dispute broke out at the party and shots were fired.
"He was standing up against a wall, him and his girlfriend, and two guys got into an argument, and they just started shooting, and my son stepped in front of his girlfriend to shield her," Larry Aaron Jr. said, per Kim Dacey of WBAL-TV. "And one of the bullets got him."
He was one of two people shot in the altercation. The suspect in the incident remains at large.
"Since the party spread very quickly on social media, we know most of the people, if not all at this party, have social media accounts and cell phones," Anne Arundel County police Lieutenant Ryan Frashure told Dacey. "So, we're asking if anyone has any type of video or pics from the party that detectives could use, to identify anybody, whether they be more witnesses they can speak to or possible suspects, to please contact our detectives over at the western district."
His mother told Traylor that several of his teammates, including running back Tyler King and linebackers Jaquan Yulee and Donyae Moody, have since visited him in the hospital
"He is in good spirits and he's talking with teammates," she said. "I'm so proud of how the Marshall family sticks together."
Aaron, a redshirt freshman this past season, registered 13 tackles in eight games in 2017.