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Jabs’ Neck Brace Comes Off

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(credit: CBS) Holly Wagner
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The hockey player who was paralyzed earlier this year is now without a neck brace.

The 16-year-old suffered a paralyzing hit during a high school hockey game that severed his spinal cord. He was playing for Benilde-St. Margaret’s and was checked from behind.

Family members report the progress Jack Jablonski has made in three months is remarkable. What may be just as exciting for his family is that it looks like Jack is very close to being able to go back home.

The family shared photos that were taken just seconds after his nurses helped remove his neck brace.

He was shown with a big smile on his face.

His family said they’ve been waiting for this day. They said Jablonski continues to keep a positive outlook and his spirit keeps them going.

It was three weeks ago when doctors removed the halo that held Jack’s head in place.

Doctors said he would never walk or skate again. For the last two months he’s been at Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute at Abbott Northwestern Hospital.

His story gained national attention and has leaders in the hockey community talking about ways to change the game to make it safer for all players.

In fact, Minnesota State High School League stiffened penalties on certain hits because of what happened.

As to when Jablonski will finally be able to go home, his family posted on his CaringBridge page it could happen in a few weeks.

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