Days after offering to pay for the funerals for the 10 people killed in the Santa Fe High School shooting on Friday, Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt stepped into the homes and hospital rooms of recovering shooting victims.
Clay Horn, 17, was excited to see the football star walk into his hospital room Monday. A bullet went clean through Horn’s upper thigh Friday, while another shot broke his arm above the elbow. Horn is scheduled for surgery Tuesday, according to KPRC.
Watt also visited 16-year-old Sarah Salazar. According to a Facebook post from her mother, Salazar has a broken jaw and will need a shoulder replacement, but was able to have a tube removed Monday so she can continue breathing on her own.
“JJ Watt visited her right after (they removed the tube) and it put a smile on her face,” her mother Sonia Lopez-Puentes wrote. “Thankful for all the support and prayers.”
It was just last Friday, in the hours after the tragedy 30 miles south of Houston, that word came that Watt would pay for the funerals of the victims who died in the shooting. Ten people were killed and at least 10 others were injured.
The move stunned but didn’t surprise Houstonians who saw Watt raise more than $37 million for Hurricane Harvey relief. For his tireless efforts, he was the recipient of the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award in February.
The first of the funerals for the deceased in the shooting was held on Sunday. Sabika Sheikh, a 17-year-old foreign exchange student from Pakistan, was honored by more than 2,000 people at the Masjid Al-Sabireen mosque, the Brand Lane Islamic Center in Stafford.
After the emotional service the girl’s remains were returned to her parents in Pakistan for burial.
Craig Hlavaty is a reporter for Chron.com and HoustonChronicle.com.