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Brutally beaten Giants fan speaking, family says

SAN FRANCISCO -- Family members of a San Francisco Giants fan who was savagely beaten outside Dodger Stadium in March say he is speaking and more responsive than ever since his attack nearly six months ago.

The family of Bryan Stow posted the update Wednesday on its website, saying his latest improvements came a week after he received a shunt to relieve pressure on his brain.

During a speech therapy session in which he was assisted by a tracheotomy speaking valve, Stow was able to say his full name and the names of his daughter and son.

"We are blown away with all of this," the family said. "Literally, one day we got some facial responses and the next, he's talking. His voice is gravelly and you have to be close to hear him, but he is talking. Right now, Bryan is more awake and more responsive than ever."

Stow, 42, a paramedic from Santa Cruz, suffered severe brain damage when he was attacked in Los Angeles after the Dodgers' home opener against the Giants on March 31. He remains in serious condition at San Francisco General Hospital.

Two men, Louie Sanchez, 29, and Marvin Norwood, 30, have pleaded not guilty to mayhem, assault by means likely to produce great bodily injury, and battery with serious bodily injury.

San Francisco General Hospital upgraded Stow's condition in June from critical to serious.

Still, points out CBS News Correspondent John Blackstone, his doctors cautioned in a statement this week that,: "It is premature to predict where his long journey will end, and he is not out of the woods yet."

Stow was in a coma for weeks after his head hit the ground when he was attacked.

The Dodgers have implemented increased security at their stadium.

"The rivalry between the Giants and the Dodgers is one that has long ignited fan passions," Blackstone observes, "but what happened to Brian Stowe stands as a warning that those passions can go too far."