THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) - Residents in Thomasville are grieving the loss of a young boy this week.
Friday night, people from all over Georgia showed their support for Harrison Hooks, an 8-year-old who died Sunday after an ATV accident.
Harrison’s parents told WALB the strong relationship Harrison had with his family and friends has only intensified since his passing on Sunday.
His parents said he played soccer at a YMCA in Thomasville where his peers and teachers honored Harrison by wearing red and black.
“People wanted to do something for us, and we said 'Okay, this is what you can do. You can honor our son by turning Thomasville red and black,” said Bill.
Bill and Deren Hooks said they chose those colors because Harrison was crazy for Georgia football.
“He loved people and he loved family and he loved Jesus and he loved sports, and his choice was UGA football,” said Bill.
They told WALB at just 8 years old, Harrison already had plans for college.
“He had a friend that they already decided that they were going to go to [the University of] Georgia, play football together, room together and they were going to ride a moped around because I made the mistake of saying a lot of players have one,” said Bill.
The message to turn Thomasville red and black reached Athens, where Head Football Coach Kirby Smart and several players have joined in on this mission to honor Harrison.
They said they couldn’t believe it.
“I hope one day I get to personally thank Coach Smart, because he’s done something for us we never could’ve done and that’s to really go big and honor our son,” said Bill.
Then, moments later, they get a letter in the mail from someone very unexpected, Coach Smart himself.
After the family had time to reflect over the past few days, they said they’re encouraged to know so many good things have happened because of Harrison.
“And you just never think you’re going to lose your child, which is why we just want something good to come out of this. We want his life and his death to be an example to someone to come to Christ," said Bill.