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Paralyzed Football Player Losing Insurance

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Rocky Clark was paralyzed playing football at Eisenhower High School. (CBS)

Rocky Clark was paralyzed playing football at Eisenhower High School. (CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — Ten years after he was paralyzed playing football at Eisenhower High School in south suburban Blue Island, Rocky Clark is losing his insurance coverage.

He had been covered by a catastrophic health insurance policy that School District 218 bought for him — and continues to buy for all its students.

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“I just want my son to live,” Rocky’s mother, Annette, said Friday. “I just want him here with me, as long as God will let him be.”

But she says she received a letter in August telling her that her son maxed out his $5 million policy.

The Robbins woman says Rocky has hundreds of dollars in medical bills each month that aren’t covered by public aid and Social Security disability.

She has called the district in the hopes of getting him reinstated. School District 218 Supt. John Byrne said the old insurance provider told them there’s nothing more it can do.

Byrne said school officials are looking at other ways to help Clark, such as assisting with applications for another government health insurance programs.

Rocky Clark was once a high school athlete with a bright future. But that all ended on Sept. 15, 2000, when he was paralyzed by a neck injury during a football game.

“It’s been 10 years since my accident, and a lot of people didn’t think I’d last as long,” he said.

Rocky’s mother fears the alternative if her son’s care cannot be funded.

“Rocky will have to go to a state home and I’m not gonna have that,” Annette Clark said.

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