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A North Texas teen broke his neck in several places while wrestling. He won't let that stop him from doing what he loves

In late July, 16-year-old Chris Rouse fractured his neck in several places after he was thrown on his head during a wrestling meet.

FLOWER MOUND, Texas — Chris Rouse is like so many kids. He loves his sport and works so hard, training nearly every day, because he so badly wants to play in college.

The 16-year-old wrestler from Marcus High School worked all summer, practicing and competing in club meets. 

Then on July 28, Rouse was thrown on his head and broke his neck.

"I don’t… I don’t really remember a lot of it…" he told WFAA. 

His mom, Alexis, does.

"The amount of prayers that were going on that day," she cried.

Chris got a concussion, plus several fractures in his neck. He woke up in a neck brace in a hospital bed, and doctors told him there was a chance he'd never wrestle again. 

"I broke into tears," he said. "I was heartbroken. My mom and I were sitting there crying. But, I don’t know it was hard for me to comprehend never walking back on a mat again and doing what I worked so hard for."

But Chris said he quickly became determined to prove them wrong. 

After nearly four weeks, and lots of prayer, he's back in school part-time and is expected to eventually make a full recovery.

"He’s lucky to not be paralyzed... very, very lucky," Alexis cried.

It will be many more months before Chris is able to walk back on a mat and try to wrestle again. 

"The chances of [an accident] happening again are in my mind and it worries me a little, like if I get thrown again what’s gonna happen," Chris said.

But, Chris knows he has to try. And he's got a ton of people behind him.

While his parents work to pay off Chris' medical bills, hundreds of strangers have donated thousands of dollars to help the Rouses get back on their feet. 

"It helps take that burden, away from something that, we weren't able to control," Alexis said. 

"Just because you get injured life’s not over," Chris said. "I just know I'm gonna wrestle again."

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