By Brandon HENSLEY
Jason Hogan, Crescenta Valley High School Class of 2001 who participated in track & field and football, was involved in an incident last week that left him temporarily paralyzed.
Hogan broke his C3, C4 and C5 vertebrae, and severely bruised his spinal cord on June 26 while working security for an event at Globe Bar & Kitchen in Spokane, Washington, where he resides. He currently has limited movement in his arms and legs, but cannot feel his hands or fingers.
According to witnesses, Hogan escorted a patron outside who caused a fight inside the restaurant. Once Hogan turned to go back inside, the man ran up and attacked him. Hogan was able to pull his arms around the man’s waist, but when both men fell to the ground, Hogan’s head started bleeding profusely.
He could neither move nor remember where he was or what was happening. He was taken to the hospital emergency room where he went into surgery. Hogan is awake and can speak.
A fundraiser for his medical bills and future treatment has been set up by his brothers on the website godfundme.com, requesting $100,000. In just a few days, donations have reached over $31,000.
On the gofundme page, Globe general manager Brian Mongkolpuet wrote he was there with Hogan during the altercation.
“I would like to take a moment to show my appreciation and gratitude towards all of you who have supported Jason by donating,” Mongkolpuet wrote. “He has kept us safe by risking his own well being [sic] and it is an absolute shame that a tragedy like this should befall such a good man. As Jason Hogan has protected and watched over us, so shall we respond in kind.”
The man responsible has been arrested. On Facebook, Globe Bar & Kitchen said it is prosecuting the man responsible for the assault. Hogan is currently undergoing physical therapy.
“We’re all confident he can get it all back,” said longtime friend Jason Padula. “But we think of physical therapy as rehabbing a shoulder injury, where we have full movement. This is going to be him trying to lift his shoulder to his head.”
Hogan is a combat veteran from SEAL Team 3. He completed two deployments to Iraq, and was in the initial push through Fallujah and Ramadi. He earned two Combat Actions and a Commendation of Valor.
“He’s the kind of guy you want your daughter to bring home,” said Padula. “He’s never changed. That’s the great thing about him.”
Hogan competed in track & field and football for Crescenta Valley High. He became a key player on the varsity football team his sophomore season. Hogan was slotted as receiver, and played running back and defensive back, as well as kick returner.
“What was cool about Jason was that he was our starting [defensive back], our best receiver,” said current Falcons Head Coach Paul Schilling, who was an assistant when Hogan was on the team. “He never stopped running all game. He never complained.”
Scott Carpenter, a teammate of Hogan’s back then, said he was the best player on the team by far. Off the field, Hogan would have fun quoting funny movies with his friends. Carpenter said sometimes you couldn’t keep him from talking.
But that wasn’t the person Hogan portrayed when you first met him. He has always been known as someone who carries himself with quiet confidence.
“He had a heart of gold. He was a really friendly guy once you got to know him,” Carpenter said.
“He was one of the guys who was quiet but always really good at what he did … one of the best teammates I ever had,” Padula said.
Carpenter was proud of Hogan when he joined the Navy. He wasn’t just gifted physically, Carpenter said, but also intellectually. Schilling knew Hogan was the kind of man who could succeed in the service.
“He was tough without having to act tough,” Schilling said.
Hogan’s road to recovery will be long and hard, friends said. But the overwhelming feelings from those who know him is that he will make a full recovery.
“Luckily, he’s in unbelievable physical shape,” Carpenter said. “When I first heard about his condition I thought if anyone could pull out of this it would be Jason. He’s the best athlete I’ve ever played with on any team.”
To make a donation for Hogan, visit gofundme.com http://www.gofundme.com/y47f2cs.