Coach: Blanchard has a chance to make full recovery

Week 10 about seeding, pride
November 2, 2016
Champions again! Tarpons, Lady Tarpons, win district titles
November 8, 2016

South Terrebonne defensive tackle Louis Blanchard remains hospitalized at University Hospital in New Orleans after complications from a neck injury he sustained on Monday after falling off a trampoline.

But the standout lineman is getting better and still has a chance at a full recovery, according to his coach and teammates, who are still asking for prayers throughout the weekend. 

South Terrebonne head coach Richard Curlin told The Times on Friday night that Blanchard remains sedated at the hospital so that his body can rest and be as pain-free as possible after a strenuous four-day period. 

In the fall, Blanchard’s weight landed on his neck, which caused it to condense. Throughout the week, doctors have worked to patiently stretch it back out again, which being careful to not interrupt his spine.

So far, those procedures have been successful, and physicians remain hopeful that Blanchard will have a shot to someday resume life as normal. 

“The news has been better. He’s a strong kid, and they tell me there’s some optimism. They still think that he is going to be able to make a recovery,” Curlin said. “But right now, there’s still not anything certain. Right now, it’s all still one day at a time.”

The Gators completed their 2016 season on Friday night against South Lafourche. 

South Terrebonne’s emotions from the field spilled out onto the field and the Gators beat the Tarpons 31-21 – their second win of the season.

Before the game, South Lafourche honored Blanchard, displaying a sign that expressed well-wishes and prayers for the 6-foot, 3-inch, 280-pound standout that’s a two-time District MVP.

After the game, Curlin and others said the victory was dedicated to the injured teammate, who had committed to UL-Monroe before his injury.

Check the paper edition of the Houma Times on Wednesday to see the full story on the Gators emotional night.

If anything changes in Blanchard’s status, we will update readers immediately as information becomes available. 

No. 2 Gators deal with 2 tragedies in 1 year

The South Terrebonne community suffered a couple great losses during the 2016 calendar year.

Over the summer, the Gators’ world was shook when Andraye Verdin was killed as a passenger in a one-car wreck on the Bourg-Larose Highway — an accident caused by slick roads after a rainstorm.

Verdin, 16, was a standout football player for the Gators – a guy that coach Richard Curlin said was about to be a “breakout star”.

“He was just getting comfortable,” Curlin said. “This is such a shame and is so unfair.”

Unfortunately, the tragedies didn’t stop there for South Terrebonne.

At the end of a tough football season, Gators standout lineman Louis Blanchard was severely injured after falling off a trampoline after school.

In the fall, Blanchard condensed his neck, which temporarily left him paralyzed, and which required multiple surgeries.

Doctors speculated Blanchard could possibly make a full recovery, but weeks later, things took a turn for the worst and he passed away at a New Orleans hospital.

He was 18.

Just weeks before the injury, Blanchard had given a verbal commitment to continue his football career at UL-Monroe.

After his death, locals rallied together to show their respects to the dominant lineman, who ended up winning his third-straight District Defensive MVP Award in 2016.

Louis Blanchard

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