NewsCitrus, Hernando County


Citrus county community honors teen that died after collapsing on football field

Posted at 9:57 PM, Oct 01, 2021

INVERNESS, Fla. — Peace in a time of grief. That’s what the parents of 16-year-old Antonio Hicks say they’re feeling after their son collapsed at football practice Tuesday and later died.

“I am so blessed and grateful that God blessed the two of us with him for the 16 years we had," said Lakesha Harrison, Antonio's mom.

Lakesha and Antonio's father, Henry Hicks, say they credit most of their peace to their faith.

“You can’t find the word ‘oops’ in the bible from the from the index to the end in revelations, you ain’t gon find ‘oops’ in the bible, so God don’t ever make a mistake,” said Henry.

Antonio dad hugging coach

The pair tell ABC Action News that the rest of their peace comes from the love they’ve received from the community, who came out Friday for a candlelight vigil.

“We just really appreciate everyone showing us love because we really need it. This is the only thing keeping us strong right now," said Henry.

In the midst of the laughter, love, and tears at that vigil, came a moment of absolution between Antonio's Citrus High School football coach and his father.

“I know that coach tried his everything [to save my son]," said Henry.

Though their son is gone, Antonio's parents say they’re working to make sure he’s never forgotten.

“We want to get with the schools and possibly do like a yearly scholarship, football or other sport, to keep his name going," said Lakesha.

Antonio’s family says funeral services will be held at Cornerstone Baptist Church in Inverness on October 9 at 1 p.m.

They’ve invited the entire community to attend for a final goodbye.