SARANAC, Mich. (WOOD) — For a community that experienced tremendous loss at the beginning of the season, the Saranac varsity football team showed nonstop grit and heart as the community honored Skylar Lasby.
The seventh-grader passed away after collapsing during football practice a day before the season started.
His family served as honorary captains Friday in Saranac’s 52-28 win over Potterville. They learned his jersey is now retired from the youth football program.
All season, News 8 watched the Saranac community show love and support for the Lasby family.
“It’s been just tremendous with all the support that we’ve gotten from everybody,” Scott Lasby, Skylar’s dad, told News 8. “It’s been constant. We never expected anything anywhere near like this.”
With every touchdown, the players, cheerleaders and spectators held up two fingers high in the air. It’s a representation of Skylar’s number and a gesture his dad hopes will extend beyond the football field.
“It’s something I’d like to push even beyond football. We’re hoping to try to continue it with all the sports, just to kind of keep it all going,” Scott Lasby explained.
In reaction to the tragedy, the district reviewed its emergency response practices. There are now additional automated external defibrillators and supplies available to the district, including an AED that will be installed in a box located at the practice field.
Friday night, it was also announced the Saranac Athletic Boosters purchased three additional AEDs for use across all youth sports in the community.