Family and friends show support for Griffith, remains critical

Isaac Griffith in 2013 signing his letter of intent to play football at Indiana University.

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Some Homestead High School students and teachers gathered Tuesday to pray for Isaac Griffith, a former Homestead grad and football standout. He was seriously injured in a swimming accident in Sarasota, Florida Monday night.

According to the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Department, Griffith had been drinking with a few friends before going to the beach to swim. Once he got in the water, a current took him 15 feet away from the swim buoy. Tyler Zimske played on Homestead’s football team with Griffith. He organized the prayer meeting after school Tuesday. He said he found out about the accident Monday night.

“It didn’t feel real,” Zimske said. “I’m still kind of numb about the whole thing.”

He said he’s hard to believe such a talented football player is in this type of condition.

“Isaac’s kind of like unstoppable on the field, and it’s just weird seeing him down like this,” said Zimske.

Chad Zolman, Homestead’s head football coach, received a call from Griffith’s father, Shannon, Monday night. Zolman said Shannon Griffith was looking for assistance to get down to Florida to be with his son. Eventually, he was able to find a way down to Florida. Zolman said it was hard getting the news of what happened to Isaac.

“We feel like we have a family member who’s hurting right now, and our kids know it,” said Zolman.

Sarasota Memorial Hospital has released an statement as of 6 p.m. Tuesday regarding Isaac’s progress and statement from his parents:

Indiana University freshman Isaac Griffith remains in a medically induced coma in Sarasota Memorial’s Critical Care Unit. His condition is critical, but stable. Doctors say he is showing small, but incremental improvements.

Isaac’s parents, Shannon and Kim Griffith are by their son’s side and deeply grateful for the prayers and support from friends and followers across the states. They have asked for privacy during their son’s recovery and shared the following statement:

 “We deeply appreciate the prayers and outpouring of support coming to us through tweets, calls and messages, both from Florida and Indiana. We are seeing positive signs throughout the day and winning small battles that give us hope.”

Late Tuesday night, Isaac’s father tweeted an update on his progress.

Shannon Griffith tweeted that Isaac remains on a ventilator but doctors have turned it down to 50 percent. Shannon said his family continues to pray for Isaac’s lungs to show signs of healing and they are also praying antibiotics prevent any infections. He also said the family continues to talk to Isaac because they believe he can hear them.

Isaac remained in a critical care unit at Sarasota Memorial Tuesday night.

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