Ohio State wrestler Sammy Sasso spent three days in the ICU after two teenagers allegedly shot him in the stomach and took his vehicle near campus on Aug. 18. Sasso sustained severe nerve damage to his spine and is currently in an acute care unit, according to a recent update by his family.
A 15-year-old female and a 16-year-old male were charged with aggravated robbery and felonious assault on Monday, as reported by WFMZ-TV. Sasso’s vehicle was recovered two days after the incident.
Fortunately, his injuries were not fatal, and he shared a quick update on Aug. 21.
“God bless everyone for their support during this time. It’s been tough as hell, but we are steadily improving,” he wrote. “I can’t thank everyone enough for being in my corner.”
In a GoFundMe page started this past weekend, his family said Sasso underwent emergency surgery to reconstruct his colon and then another surgery to remove the bullet near his spine.
“Upon his release from the hospital, he will be transferred to an inpatient rehabilitation facility where he will undergo comprehensive physical therapy aimed at learning how to walk again,” read the update. “At this time, Sammy is unable to walk without assistance. While the doctors are hopeful that he will make a full recovery, Sammy has a long, difficult road ahead of him.”
The school’s wrestling coach, Tom Ryan, also gave an update on the student-athlete and said Sasso does not intend to walk away from the sport he loves.
“Everyday it gets better for him,” Ryan said. “He is healing. He is going to live, which was the number one concern, and now it’s about getting him back to a place where he can wrestle. Sammy is a very determined person. He loves wrestling as much as anybody I’ve ever been around… the big dream for him right now is to get back to where he can wrestle. It will take some time but his will is unbelievably strong.”
Sasso, a fifth-year senior, has already had an accomplished career with the Buckeyes. This past season, Sasso went 29-4 en route to his second Big Ten championship. He also earned All-Big Ten honors and was named an All-American for the fourth time in his career. That is just the ninth time an Ohio State wrestler has accomplished that feat.