Marshall redshirt freshman defensive tackle Larry Aaron is paralyzed after being hit in the back by stray gunfire during a New Year's Eve party Monday morning in Severn, Maryland, his mother, Melissa Aaron, told the Herald-Dispatch of Huntington, West Virginia.
"I'm in shock myself," Melissa Aaron told the newspaper Monday night. "I'm just numb. It's such a freak accident."
WJZ-TV, the CBS affiliate in Baltimore, reported two people were shot just before 1 a.m. ET on New Year's Day. According to the reports, Aaron's injuries are not considered to be life-threatening, but his mother said he is paralyzed.
"It is in his spine and he has no feeling in his legs," Melissa Aaron told the Herald-Dispatch. "They can't remove it because they are afraid it could be dangerous and hinder him even more to do so. It is right in the middle of his spine."
According to the Herald-Dispatch, people at the party told Melissa Aaron that Larry was standing by a wall when an altercation broke out nearby that led to gunfire.
Melissa Aaron told the Herald-Dispatch that Marshall running back Tyler King and linebackers Jaquan Yulee and Donyae Moody drove to Maryland to visit Larry Aaron, and that her son was alert and speaking with them Monday evening.
"He is in good spirits and he's talking with teammates," Melissa Aaron told the paper. "I'm so proud of how the Marshall family sticks together."
Larry Aaron played in eight games and had 13 tackles this year, including one in Marshall's 31-28 win over Colorado State in the Gildan New Mexico Bowl on Dec. 16.