A Waynesville High School baseball player, Patrick Clegg, was killed when he was hit in the head by a pitch on Tuesday. 16 year old Patrick Clegg was declared brain dead at St. John’s hospital Thursday evening. Read the rest of this tragic story below. See video of Clegg’s father.

16 year old Patrick Clegg suffered severe brain damage when he was struck in the head by a pitch on Tuesday. Clegg, a promising young ballplayer, turned to get out of the way by a wild pitch, when he was hit in the head just below his helmet causing major damage to the brain. He was kept alive for a couple days on a respirator, until being declared brain dead on Thursday.

Late Tuesday, Patrick Clegg was taken off the respirator to see if he responded in a positive way; his family had a glimmer of hope when his diaphragm did respond for the 11 minutes he was off the respirator. Clegg was put back on the respirator to see if more good news would come, but it never did.

St. John’s hospital spokesperson Cora Scott said Thursday the Clegg family has declined to speak with the media, and did not wish for more information to be made public. From the News-Leader.com:

In the statement, the Clegg family — parents Mike and Mary Clegg and Patrick’s six brothers and sisters –conveyed their gratitude for the kindness they’ve received since the injury. Funeral arrangements will be announced later, the statement said.

The Waynesville Tiger baseball team decided to return to the field on Friday and pay tribute to their fallen teammate. With Patrick Clegg’s jersey number 27 written on their hats and marked on their faces, the team went back to what they know best, playing the game that Patrick Clegg loved. From the News-Leader.com:

There was a moment of silence before the game in remembrance of Clegg, who died Thursday after being hit by a pitch in Tuesday’s game against Lebanon. He was 16 years old.

The Waynesville High coaching staff polled players and parents on Thursday to see if they wanted to continue to play in their tournament. The choice was unanimous. One father said:

“Everybody knows the best treatment you get when there’s a tragic blow in life is to keep living life,” the father said. “Patrick Clegg wouldn’t have wanted his teammates not to play. The question I asked my son is, ‘If this was your position, would you want your teammates to fold it in?’ And he said, ‘Heck, no.'”

Patrick Clegg’s funeral will be held at 2 p.m. on Tuesday in the Waynesville High gymnasium; the Tigers lost their game 8-1 but in my eyes it is a victory, a victory because they returned to the field and battled for their fallen teammate. It is exactly what 16 year old Patrick Clegg would have wanted.

Patrick Clegg’s Father Video