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Family: Connor Erickson, injured in football game, to come home after months in rehab

Brainerd H.S. football player hospitalized with brain injury
Brainerd H.S. football player hospitalized with brain injury 02:05

BRAINERD, Minn -- Christmas is still more than three weeks away, but the Erickson family is about to get the greatest possible gift delivered early.

Conner Erickson, the Brainerd High School football captain who suffered a serious head injury in September, will soon come home after months in the hospital and rehab.

"He is up and active and everything," said Conner's uncle, Jared Erickson. "He's made a lot of recovery, but he's not who he was on the day of Sept. 9."

It was on the night of Sept. 9 when Erickson collapsed on the sideline against Moorhead after getting hit on a routine play. An ambulance took him to a hospital in Fargo where he underwent emergency brain surgery.

Conner's spent the last few months at Mayo Clinic, where he's been doing physical therapy.  

Connor Erickson Erickson Family/CaringBridge

"I was there. I saw him sedated, intubated, unsure of what the future was going to hold and what was going to happen," Jared Erickson recalled. "Knowing now what I know about this kind of injury, to see him be able to take steps and talk and to eat and do the things that we take for granted every day, I get emotional."

In a post on CaringBridge, the Ericksons invited the community to line the streets to greet Conner as he returns. The celebration will also be a homecoming for Conner's mother, who's been with her son at the hospital every night.

"One of the biggest changes is going to be having their whole family back in their house, especially for the holidays," Jared said. "We'll be pretty grateful."

Conner's recovery will include regular rehab which he can do in Brainerd. He will need a second brain surgery back at the hospital in Fargo, which will be scheduled at a later date.

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