DC boy who survived being shot in head becomes honorary member of H.D. Woodson football team

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A Washington D.C. boy who had a brush with death was honored by a high school football team at their game Friday.

Jaydan Stancil became the first honorary member of the H.D. Woodson Warriors. He certainly earned the title of “warrior’ after surviving being shot in the head by a stray bullet at just 9 years old. He was initially paralyzed and unable to speak.

“That bullet will remain in his head unfortunately, so we have to keep a close eye on Jaydan,” said the boy’s mother, Monique Nichols. “He will never be able to play contact sports.”

The players carried a smiling Jaydan onto the field and brought him into their pre-game huddle – with everyone promising a victory.

Jaydan said while he loves football, not being able to play himself is no major concern – not after how far he has come.

“I wouldn’t say that I’m disappointed because where I came from and now, I don’t have to be mad at anything,” he said. “But unfortunately, I do wish sometimes that I can get out with my friends and play football.”

His mother said Jaydan handles the situation better than her at times. She said the hurt from seeing her son suffer will never go away.

“At the end of the day, when you lie down to go to sleep, my son sleeps with me every night, so I see the wound, I see the scars on his head,” Nichols said with tears in her eyes. “Some days are good, some days aren’t so good.”

Jaydan said this was one of the good ones.

“Right now, in this very moment, I feel great,” he said as the game started.

The Warriors kept their promise as they won the game for their newest member.

Three days later on Labor Day, Jaydan threw out the ceremonial first pitch on behalf of D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier at Nationals Park before the team's game.