Last Updated: Thursday, January 12, 2017
A former Countryside High football star, who was brutally attacked in California, has returned home to Tampa.
- Injured former football star returns home
- Mike Jerrido brought home Wednesday
- Former Congressman David Jolly assisted in effort to get Jerrido home
- Previous story
Mike Jerrido was transported by plane to the Bay area Wednesday afternoon.
He was greeted by family and friends.
"We love you Mike," they cheered.
Jerrido, a 2013 Countryside High grad and star athlete, was attacked in February 2016 while attending a college party in California. Authorities said a group of people beat Jerrido and left him for dead.
Since then, Jerrido, 21, has been in a semi-coma with a traumatic brain injury. Along the way, his family has been desperately trying to get him home.
A suspect has been arrested and charged in that attack.
Jerrido's mom flew to California to be at her son's bedside and she pushed to get him back for treatment in the Bay area.
"Seemed like everytime we tried, there was a roadblock," mother Sherrie Williams said.
"It was very hard," said Grandmother Lorria Eady. "It was very hard."
Williams reached out to former Congressman David Jolly.
Jolly cleared the hurdles to make the trip possible. First, the medical team flew Jerrido to Atlanta. Then, Jerrido was transported to Tampa.
"Between working with insurance, working with health care providers, working with transport agensices, we just stood there and made sure Sherrie could be reunited with her son," said Jolly.
The ambulance transport service, Jet ICU, also helped get Jerrido home.
The owners paid $55,000 for the transport flights from California to the Bay area.
"This was the appropriate thing for us to do," said Dr. Carlos Smith, Medical Director for Jet ICU. "This was a community service. It's a community outreach and we needed to bring Michael home."
And Williams said her son was ready to come home.
"I asked him before he left, ready to come home? He shook his head yes," said Williams.
Now home, Jerrido still faces challenges. He can't talk and needs 24-hour care.
But being home gives the football star his cheerleading squad. And his mother said, that home advantage is just what the doctor ordered.