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  1. Sports

Family of Wharton LB Sean McNamee retains lawyer

As Wharton junior linebacker Sean McNamee remains in a medically induced coma, his family has retained a lawyer to find out more about what sent him there.

The McNamees have asked Steve Yerrid of The Yerrid Law Firm to investigate Wednesday's incident, when McNamee was critically injured playing catch before practice.

"Sean is in a coma and lying in a hospital bed fighting for his life…" Yerrid said Monday afternoon in a statement to the Times.

"Within hours of this unnecessary tragedy, those who may bear responsibility already had attorneys interview witnesses, taking statements, and providing legal advice. In that regard, the interests of the McNamee family and all student athletes will also be protected. From a legal standpoint, our goal is to make certain the full unbridled truth is made known."

Yerrid's firm specializes in personal injury, wrongful death and medical malpractice.

Hillsborough County Public Schools spokesman Steve Hegarty reiterated Monday in a statement that the district is investigating how the injury occurred.

The 16-year-old McNamee hit his head on an unused paint machine Wednesday. The blow fractured his skull, caused swelling in his brain and forced emergency surgery. Because the incident happened before practice, he was not wearing a helmet.

His family has requested privacy but has thanked the community for its support. Hundreds of Twitter posts have included the hash tag #PrayForSean.

Matt Baker can be reached at mbaker@tampabay.com or on Twitter @MattHomeTeam.

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