Vanderbilt Retires #1 Jersey For 6-Year-Old Fan Fighting For His Life

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The SEC media days wrapped up earlier this week, and while the talk seemed to focus on which team will dethrone Auburn as the champions, there was another story that needed more coverage. It was the story of Vanderbilt retiring its #1 jersey. The school didn’t do this to honor one of its former greats–instead, it’s to honor the Commodores’ biggest fan, who is in a hospital fighting for his life.

Six-year-old Michael Sloan was found at the bottom of a pool last week, and he has been in the hospital since then. First-year head coach Derek Mason heard about Michael and personally visited the hospital on Wednesday to give the family a #1 jersey.

From FOX Sports:

Mason drove to the Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital to personally give a No. 1 jersey to the family of Michael Sloan. At the hospital, Mason also told Sloan’s parents that his program is retiring No. 1 this season in support of Michael, their “No. 1 fan” (no current player was wearing the number).

This is an amazing gesture from Mason. It’s not every day you see this kind of thing. Sloan suffered brain damage in the tragedy, and doctors are not optimistic about his recovery. However, there was some good news on Wednesday when Michael’s father posted an update to Facebook.

Today has been an incredible day. The breathing tube is out and he is breathing on his own! This is progress. There is still lots of room to go though. The support we have gotten over the last few days has been amazing. I know that he appreciates them. We have heard from people all over the world at this point. He has had some of his idols make contact with us. When he sees how many people are taking time from their day to think about him, pray for him, or send him a message he will be floored.

If you would like to show your support, you can tweet #PrayForMichael. Keep fighting, Michael–I’ll be praying for a speedy recovery.

[via FOX Sports]

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