www.baltimoresun.com/sports/college/football/bs-sp-navy-will-mckamey-0325-20140325,0,428646.story

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Navy's Will McKamey dies at Shock Trauma

Navy freshman collapsed during practice Saturday in Annapolis

By Don Markus, The Baltimore Sun

11:32 PM EDT, March 25, 2014

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Navy football player Will McKamey died Tuesday night at Maryland Shock Trauma, three days after collapsing during a practice in Annapolis.

McKamey, 19, never regained consciousness after undergoing surgery to relieve bleeding and swelling in his brain.

"We are all so very heartbroken by the death of Midshipman Will McKamey," Naval Academy Superintendent Mike Miller said in a statement. "This is devastating news for his family, his classmates, his teammates and the entire Naval Academy family. We offer our deepest condolences to Will's family, friends and shipmates in the wake of this tragedy."

A freshman slotback from Knoxville, Tenn., McKamey had sustained a similar brain injury during his senior year in high school at Grace Christian Academy, where his father Randy is the head football coach. The younger McKamey was transported to a hospital in Chattanooga, where he spent several days but did not undergo surgery.

McKamey was later cleared to play by doctors in Tennessee after undergoing several CAT scans and MRIs, his parents said in a statement Monday. An all-state Class A running back, McKamey did not play any contact sports for nine months.

Since being transported to Shock Trauma by medical helicopter Saturday morning, McKamey was surrounded by family members who flew up from Knoxville as well as Navy coaches, players and administrators.

"During this most difficult of times, first and foremost, our prayers and thoughts turn to Randy, Kara [his mother] and their beautiful family," Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo said in a statement. "Our deepest and most sincere condolences go out to their entire family and friends. As our Navy football family mourns the loss of one of our brothers, we also celebrate and honor his life. He loved his family, his friends and his teammates."

Funeral arrangements are pending, and more information will be provided as it becomes available. Grief counseling services and support will be made available to midshipmen, faculty and staff through chains of command, Navy chaplains, and the Midshipmen Development Center.

The football team canceled practices after the incident on Saturday.

don.markus@baltsun.com

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