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Aberdeenshire teen vows to play football again as he makes ‘miracle recovery’ from New York car cash

With his life 'hanging in the balance', former Huntly FC youngster Ethan Walker was taken to hospital and treated for injuries in ICU.

Ethan Walker with a Scotland flag.
Ethan Walker from Ellon was hit by a car in the US. Image: Facebook.

An Aberdeenshire teen has vowed to carry on his football career even after he was hit by a car.

Formerly of Huntly FC as a youth, Ethan Walker from Auchnagatt was hit by a car travelling at 45mph while walking back to college in America.

The 17-year-old made the journey from Aberdeenshire to the US to pursue his passion for football.

He secured a spot as starting centre-back on the Genesee Community College soccer team in the state of New York.

However, on September 12, Ethan’s blossoming career was brought to a halt.

He spent several weeks in hospital before he was able to fly home. However, Ethan will require more surgery.

‘I’m looking forward to getting back out there’

Speaking to BBC Scotland, he said: “My playing days aren’t over yet, thankfully. The doctors are very surprised at how well I’m doing.”

“Reading my notes, they just think it’s a miracle how well I’m doing.

“It’s great being home, I can see my friends again. Some of my mates have been to see me.

“Thankfully I’m getting the feeding tube out hopefully in a couple of weeks, once my swallow is better, so that’s good.”

Fundraising means the world

Ethan has little memory of the car crash.

He continued: “I remember about the last two-and-a-half weeks of being at the hospital. I remember the day before my surgery and I remember the day of my surgery when I got my knee operated on.

“I remember the day after as well, I had a very bad reaction to the anaesthetic and the painkillers.”

“I just want to say thank you to everyone who gave money to the fundraising page to support me.

“I am looking forward to the future, to healing and getting back to the gym and football again.”

Ethan Walker
Ethan once played for Huntly FC as a youth. Image: Facebook.

Described by friends as a “real go-getter” with “dreams as big as the football pitch itself”, Ethan has now had over £50,000 raised for him by friends and family to help with costs not met by insurance and to support his family.

Jaclyn Walker, Ethan’s mum, flew from Scotland to be by his side as soon as she heard the news.

Also speaking to BBC Scotland, she said: “But I phoned the number on the email, and I spoke to the sheriff over in Buffalo, and he told me what had happened and from that moment on it was just a blur.

“I just tried to get a flight as quick as I could. It took a while to find out the severity of what actually had happened.

‘I just told him to keep fighting’

“I spoke to one doctor and he kind of told me about the brain bleed and about how he was just unconscious, ventilated, and they weren’t sure if there was brain activity. I didn’t find out the extent of all his other injuries until I got there.

“I just saw him and wanted to sit down and hold him and talk to him. I’d sprayed myself with loads of perfume, which is so stupid, when I got off the plane just so he could smell me, even if nothing else he would know that that was my perfume.

“I can’t even think what I thought other than I just need to be there to tell him to keep fighting.

“The doctors over there, the trauma team that had him for first 11 days, they kept checking on him.

“Every time someone that treated him saw him in the hospital, they were just like ‘you’re a miracle, we can’t actually believe he’s the same boy that was down in the trauma unit with everything going on’.

“And then when we got home we had the same reaction from all the doctors in Aberdeen that he’s seen in person. They have all read his notes, and then when he appears in front of them they are just like ‘Wow. You are not what we were expecting to be walking in the door’.

“I couldn’t be prouder, his attitude, everything about him. I don’t have words. Just super proud.”

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