The long road back - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

The long road back

November 12, 2002

This wasn't how Larry Shivers planned on spending his 17th birthday, lying in a hospital bed covered with bandages and tubes. But after a car accident nearly claimed his life last Thursday, Shivers feels fortunate to have even made it to his birthday. " Yeah, (I feel) blessed," Mitchell-Baker wide receiver Larry Shivers said.

The junior wide receiver on the Mitchell-Baker football team was on the way home from practice when his friend lost control of his car, causing the vehicle to flip several times and ejecting Larry and one other passenger. Shivers said, "I just remember flying from the vehicle, that's about it."

After two nights in intensive care with a punctured lung and a badly damaged liver, he is now on his way to recovery. "It's getting better day by day," Shivers added. More importantly each day is a step closer to returning to the football field, where he started on the Eagles 6 and 3 playoff bound team. "He keeps everybody happy, he makes everybody around him smile," Senior Fullback Zac Miller said.

But it was Larry that was smiling upon hearing that his team won without him last Friday in a 15-12 victory over Randolph-Clay. The following morning his head coach presented him with the game ball. "We felt that this game was for him. Even though it was short notice and that kind of thing, the kids wanted to do that for him," Mitchell-Baker head coach Elliott Walker said.

And although he didn't get to celebrate his birthday like he wanted to, Shivers hopes to be well enough to return to the sidelines and root on his team in the playoffs, which to him would be the greatest birthday present of all.

Posted by kevin.mcdermond@walb.com