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Football Player Dies From Hit During Charity Game

Last updated on Monday, May 14, 2012

(TOLEDO, OHIO) - A semiprofessional football player from a Portland, Ind., team died Saturday after he was hit on a play against a Toledo team during a nonleague benefit game played at Springfield High School, The Blade in Toledo reports.

David Coleman, Jr., 32, who played for the Jay County Panthers, was pronounced dead at St. Luke's Hospital, said Dr. Maneesha Pandey, deputy Lucas County coroner.

An autopsy is planned today, she said.

Mr. Coleman, a linebacker and defensive lineman, was 6 feet, 1 inch tall and weighed 235 pounds.

According to his Facebook page, Mr. Coleman, who lived in Napoleon, attended Patrick Henry High School.

Sgt. Todd Shelton of the Holland Police Department said the game was staffed by emergency medical workers, who rushed to the field to provide aid immediately after Mr. Coleman went down.

The incident occurred at 3:30 p.m. during a game against Toledo's Northwest Ohio Knights.

Sergeant Shelton said the incident appeared to be an accident, with no indication of foul play involved.

The game was a benefit to raise money for a cure for ALS.

The event, the fourth annual Dave Calabrese Football Blitz, is named for Maumee resident Dave Calabrese, who coaches the Knights and was given a diagnosis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease, in 2008.

The Knights, who open their fifth season June 2, play in the Great Lakes Football League; the Panthers compete in the Crossroads Football League.

The teams play full-contact football by NFL rules.

The Knights' roster consists primarily of former local college and high school players.

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