Stoneman Douglas Football Team Honors Shooting Survivors
Eagles out practicing for the fall season as early as Florida state law allows.
By law, Florida high schools are allowed to start holding fall football practices starting July 30.
On the campus of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, players and coaches were on the field at 12:01 a.m. on that date for “Midnight Madness.”
The Eagles felt hitting the field as soon as possible was the best way to honor the 17 victims – including assistant football coach Aaron Feis – who were killed on Valentine’s Day during the horrific school shooting at Stoneman Douglas.
For the team and head coach Willis May, getting back on the field was a way to show respect for the dead, as well as demonstrate leadership for the school as a whole.
“You represent this high school,” May told his team before practice. “Every time you put that Douglas (jersey) on, make it count for something. Make it mean something. When somebody faces us this year, one thing I want them to know is, you ain’t getting an injured Eagle. You’re not facing an injured Eagle that’s just going to let you roll over them. You better bring the best you got.”
At the conclusion of practice, the team had a water fight where balloons were allowed but water guns and pistols were not.
Here’s a video from The Associated Press summing up the night of the team’s first practice.
A recap of the night that was at Stoneman Douglas. #MSDStrong pic.twitter.com/hQMYS4XxmJ
— Tim Reynolds (@ByTimReynolds) July 30, 2018
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