Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Latest Updates

November 28, 2012

Football players from Pee Wee to the NFL can face serious head injuries

Chris Henry, a former West Virginia football player who played in the NFL for the Cincinnati Bengals, died at the age of 26 after falling off a moving vehicle during an argument. After his death in 2009, an autopsy revealed that Henry was suffering from significant brain damage as a result of all the concussions he had sustained during his football career.  The autopsy results showed that Henry’s brain resembled that of an elderly person suffering from severe Alzheimer’s disease.

(Story continue after video)


Henry is just one of many football players who suffer significant brain damage as a result of repeated blows to the head, which cause concussions or traumatic brain injuries that alter brain function. If the concussion is severe, the brain may swell. Even minor concussions involve headaches, dizziness, and concussions can cause impairment of memory, judgment, balance, and coordination. Each year, about 67,000 concussions are reported during football games. That means there is at least one concussion in every American football game.

Clay Harbor, the 25-year-old tight end for the Philadelphia Eagles, rocks his head after a tackle.

Research shows that repeated concussions can cause long-term damage to the brains of football players, in some cases, producing the kind of memory loss and addled thinking found in patients with severe Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

“What you are seeing in the NFL –  long-term effects [ranging from] suicides to memory loss and dementia—those can all be [traced] back to concussions,” says WVU Athletic Trainer Randy Meador. “You can’t find a hotter topic right now in sports medicine.”

Some critics say that professional and college football teams need to do more to protect their players from such repeated concussions and the prospect of severe brain damage. For instance when a player is acting strangely or having difficulty walking, he should be removed from the game. No player should be allowed to play again until he is symptom-free and cleared by the medical staff,  says Tim Foley, who played football at Frostburg State University in Maryland and has had at least five documented concussions.

Text Only
Latest Updates
  • new water treatment facility Officials break ground on new waste water facility

    Rain didn’t dampen enthusiasm Thursday when ground was broken for a wastewater plant that will double both the treatment capacity and opportunities for economic development in the Claypool Hill and Wardell communities.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Absentee voting lagging

    Absentee balloting is off to a slow start in a closely-watched Southwest Virginia Senate race that will determine which political party controls the General Assembly.  
    Three candidates are vying to succeed former lawmaker Phillip Puckett, who resigned in June. A special election is set for Aug. 19. The candidates are Republican A. Benton “Ben” Chafin Jr. Democrat D.M. “Mike” Hymes and independent Rick A. Mullins.

    July 25, 2014

  • Civil complaint filed against GM alleging defects caused local woman’s death

    The estate of a young Mercer County woman and her unborn child have filed a civil complaint in Mercer County Circuit Court alleging that a defective ignition switch in the woman’s 2005 Chevy Cobalt led to her death as well as the death of her unborn child.
    Keisha Dawn Vest, 26, of Princeton, the wife of Jason Vest, and mother of a (then) 3-year-old son, was driving to Mt. Airy, N.C., on May 2, 2006, when the brakes on her vehicle failed. Mrs. Vest was working in Mt. Airy as an MRI technician. Without brakes, Mrs. Vest lost control of her vehicle and entered an intersection into the path of a tractor-trailer. She died as a result of the injuries she received in the wreck.

    July 25, 2014

  • ‘Overwhelming:’ Area fans supporting Saints trip to West Virginia

    The community response to the New Orleans Saints’ three-week visit to The Greenbrier for training camp can be described best in one word that Greenbrier owner Jim Justice, Saints general manager Mickey Loomis and Saints head coach Sean Payton all used Thursday when discussing the team’s first 24-plus hours in the Mountain State.
    “Overwhelming,” they all agreed.

    July 25, 2014

  • Va. to join higher education distance learning agreement

    Virginia higher education officials are working to make it easier for students to take online classes and for universities to offer them.

    July 24, 2014

  • Police Brutality screen shot. Technology plays key part in battling police brutality (VIDEO)

    Allegations of police brutality are nothing new -- as long as there has been law enforcement, citizens have registered claims that some officers cross the line. But in the last few years, the claims of excessive force are being corroborated with new technology from cell phone cameras, police dash-cams and surveillance videos. 

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Better police needed for college teams enticed to cheat

    The NCAA once cracked down on colleges that went too far luring top prospects, then it targeted teams that lathered players with special treatment. That was until the NCAA's get-tough approach backfired, rendering it ineffective and creating an opportunity for those who want to play dirty.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Has the ipad lost its swag?

    July 24, 2014

  • Facebook continues moneymaking trend

    Facebook seems to have figured out - for now at least - the holy grail for all media right now: how to make money selling mobile ads.

    July 24, 2014

  • McAuliffe heads West to fundraiser

    July 24, 2014