Football players honor 8-year-old teammate who was killed in accidental pellet gun shooting

A team united during a championship football game Tuesday night to honor a player who was tragically killed in an accident in 2020.
Published: Nov. 2, 2021 at 5:23 PM EDT
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HIDDENITE, N.C. (WBTV) - A team united during a championship football game Tuesday night to honor a player who was tragically killed in an accident in 2020.

Eight-year-old Grayson Osborne was a leader on the Hiddenite Elementary team. His life was unexpectedly taken in 2020 when he was accidentally shot by a pellet gun fired by a friend.

Now, the team he helped get to the big game takes time to remember him

“He loved football and baseball. Just an outstanding young man.” Aaron Arrowood said.

A talented athlete who played both sides of the ball, and a future that will never become recognized.

“He was just an excellent athlete. If this wouldn’t have happened there’s no doubt in my mind he was collegian material.” Arrowood expounded.

Grayson Osborne was a rambunctious 8-year-old who helped lead his school to the football championship two years ago. But before he got another run at the title, the unthinkable happened.

“Grayson tragically lost his life on December 20, 2020 in an accident here in Hiddenite.” said Arrowood.

Grayson was out in a field with friends during supervised target practicing with this pellet gun. But during one horrific split-second, Grayson got in between the rifle and the target as it was being fired. He was rushed to several hospitals but succumbed to his injuries a short time later.

“I’ve known him since I was in kindergarten,” Ethan Arrowood said.

Ethan Arrowood knew Grayson as well as anyone, both on the field and off and says the shock – hasn’t completely gone away.

“I just can’t believe he’s gone. It’s just really hard to know,” Ethan Arrowood said.

The teams fought hard to make a return trip to the championship – for Grayson. And now that that goal was reached, they wanted to remember a friend and teammate for who he was, and what he could have been.

“Hopefully, both teams come out and play for Grayson tonight. Hopefully, we’ll put on a show where he can just look down and smile on us tonight.” Keenen Boston told WBTV.

Grayson’s parents will walk their son’s jersey to the center of the field as a parade of motorcycles and police cars surround them.

The team also changed their name to “The Grayson’s” to keep his memory alive for future players. Many never knowing who he was. For those that do remember, a challenge to all to make every moment count.

“Every second is precious. Every second we get with our children. Take advantage of it,” Arrowood said.

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