By: KDKA-TV News Staff
NEW CASTLE (KDKA) — A video of a local high school graduate walking at high school graduation several years after being paralyzed by a football injury is going viral.
Fast forward to earlier this week, and Hamilton, with the help of leg braces and a walker, with his therapist by his side, walked across the football field to receive his diploma at graduation.
Go ahead and try to keep a dry eye through this. In 2018, Laurel High School’s Hayden Hamilton was paralyzed from the neck down after a hit in a high school football game. Tonight HE WALKED!!!! To get his diploma at graduation – and then got a standing ovation. pic.twitter.com/pRczqXJUbK
— Mike White (@mwhiteburgh) June 5, 2021
Hamilton’s walking across the field was met with a standing ovation from the crowd.
“That felt better than any touchdown I ever scored,” Hayden told the Post-Gazette’s Mike White.
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Former Steelers player Ryan Shazier, whose football career was cut short due to a spinal injury of his own, was among those to chime in with words of praise for Hamilton.
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Hayden this is amazing man I’m so proud of you. https://t.co/6apx87niFv
— Ryan Shazier (@RyanShazier) June 5, 2021
Hamilton told the Post-Gazette that he just wanted to be able to walk off of the field because he didn’t get the chance to do that on the night he was injured.