You may recall the sad saga of Southern wide receiver Devon Gales. Gales fractured his C6 vertebrae in a game at Georgia way back in 2015, and has remained in Georgia ever since, rehabbing himself to the point where he has regained the ability to walk.
Now close to three years since the injury, Gales remains in Georgia, in the Atlanta area, and is wheelchair bound. Close to 18 months ago, Georgia launched a fundraising drive to build the Gales family a new house.
Somewhere along the way, the project stalled. All the while, the Gales family tried to make the best of it. Gales settled into the Shepherd Center in metro Atlanta, and his mother Tish and two siblings moved to Georgia to be with him, while Gales’s father, remained in his job with UPS in Baton Rouge, La., waiting for the family to secure a home in Georgia before he transferred.
Former state senator Jim Butterworth heard about the lack of progress on the Gales family home and put in a call to former Georgia linebacker Whit Marshall, whose family business was behind a development in the Atlanta suburb of Jefferson. The Gales family had their pick of available lots, and the homebuilder, Pavan Homes, would donate a specially-designed, wheelchair-accessible home.
“I kept asking the same thing: So, it’s donated?” Gales’s mother told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Y’all are just going to let me choose? I’m like ‘Oh, my God.’”
It will still be months before the home is built and ready for the family to move in, but the ball is finally moving.
“This is the breakthrough I’ve been waiting on,” Tish said.