A proud father in Oklahoma is a new Sacramento Republic FC fan after the team posed for a picture with his son while out to dinner.
Jon Guill and his family were eating at the Spaghetti Warehouse in downtown Oklahoma City last week when he noticed the team eating nearby.
He asked coach Predrag Radosavljevic if it would be O.K. for the team to take a photo with his son. Radosavljevic accepted, and the whole team smiled for the camera with Guill’s son Justen.
“I don’t even know our Oklahoma City Energy, or any other team for that matter. But your Sacramento team just made me a fan of them for what they did here for our son,” Guill said in his Facebook post to the team’s page.
Guill said in his Facebook post he is a disabled combat veteran who served in Iraq. Guill told FOX40 his son was recently diagnosed with cerebral palsy, and his family’s struggles were profiled in a New York Times article posted Sunday.
He also said the player holding his son asked to hold the child, which Guill said warmed his heart, because “we have family and friends who won’t even hold him.”
Justen’s story was mentioned as part of a larger New York Times story about military hospitals and the current investigation into their medical mistakes.
The family says before Justen was born, he was in distress, and alarms from the fetal monitor kept going off. In a lawsuit, the family says the nurse warned the doctor on duty about the alarms, but that did not seem to speed up needed care.
The Guill’s son has brain damage from a lack of oxygen before birth, and cannot crawl or swallow or talk. Guill told FOX40 it took weeks for his son’s eyes to open and to grab a finger. After 26 days in the NICU, he was able to go home.
Justen, and his siblings are members of the Kiowa Tribe of Oklahoma.