• HS basketball player who was hit by car suffered life-threatening injuries

    By: Michael Seiden

    Updated:

    COBB COUNTY, Ga. - The parents of a Cobb County high school basketball player say he nearly died after a car hit him.

    The couple told Channel 2’s Michael Seiden that they hope what happened to their son will make drivers think twice before texting and driving.

    A car hit Malik Spellman, 17, outside Wheeler High School, where he was a student. After three weeks in a hospital, he’s now home recovering.

    Doctors said they aren’t sure if Spellman will ever be able to go to college.

    Seiden spoke exclusively with Spellman’s parents, who said they’re still shaken about what happened to their son.

    “We poured everything we had into him. We made a lot of sacrifices for his dream,” said Tonya Wright, Spellman’s mother.


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    His father, Marquis Wright, choked up when he talked about his son's future.

    He said Spellman appeared destined for greatness. Standing at just 5 feet, 7 inches, the talented teen could dunk a basketball and many coaches believed the Wheeler High School junior had the potential to earn a Division 1 scholarship.

    Last month, a driver shattered the teen’s hoop dreams.

    “I saw him flipping in the air,” Marquis Wright said. “When I got to him, he was completely knocked out.

    His eyes were glazed over. He looked like he was dead.”

    [READ: Georgia high school basketball player remains in hospital after being hit by car]

    Spellman and a friend had been at the school all day helping his father move some old weight room equipment.

    According to the family's attorney, traffic had stopped along Holt Road and the two boys were in the crosswalk carrying the heavy weight rack when a speeding car slammed into the teens.

    “To hit someone that’s directly in front of your vehicle at that rate of speed without tapping your brakes, you had to be doing something wrong,” attorney Robert Williams told Seiden.

    Police cited the driver, Nancy Valentine, 73, but right now, she isn’t facing any charges.

    [READ: Neighbors say crosswalk where teens were hit by car isn't safe]

    “We have to be conscious about driving. We can’t text and drive. We can’t look away," Williams said.

    “Just feels like in a lot of ways that he got slighted. I just want to get back what he lost. That’s the main thing because he worked so hard for it,” Marquis Wright said.

    The parents also thanked the good Samaritans who tried to help out their son out the night he was hit.

    Spellman is currently undergoing therapy five days a week as he continues to recover.

    Spellman's medical bills are piling up. A GoFundMe has been set up to the help the family out.

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