UK Football

‘I’m glad we played good for Marco.’ UK observes moment of silence for 4-year-old.

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Marco Shemwell’s death, aftermath

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A moment of silence in honor of Marco Lee Shemwell was observed at Kroger Field on Saturday prior to the start of UK’s football game against Mississippi State.

Shemwell, 4, was struck by a vehicle near the UK stadium during last Saturday’s football game against Murray State. He died Monday at UK Healthcare’s Kentucky Children’s Hospital.

The UK football team and Coach Mark Stoops will be among the honorary pallbearers at Shemwell’s funeral, according to the boy’s obituary. Visitation is scheduled from 4:30-8:30 p.m. Sunday at Calvary Christian Church in Winchester. Funeral services are scheduled for noon Monday at the church. Scobee Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

“Marco spent most of his time playing Legos and cars with his big brother, as well as dance parties in the kitchen,” his obituary reads. “Marco enjoyed music, singing and playing his guitar. He also loved Batman and Kentucky Football, always cheering for the blue team. He will be truly missed.”

After UK upset Mississippi State, 28-7, an emotional Stoops said the team would deliver the game ball to Shemwell’s family. Star running back Benny Snell, who ran for all four of the Cats’ touchdowns, was wearing Marco’s name on his wrist tape during the game.

“I’m glad we played good for Marco and the Shemwell family,” Stoops said during is opening statement. “I’m so glad that we played well in honor of him and that family.”

Snell paused when asked about his tribute to Marco.

“I put ‘RIP Marco’ — I wrote in on my wrist. It’s heartbreaking. When you really just look at life and how short it is, it’s just heartbreaking,” he said. “This team, we played for him. We played for that family. For his life to be so short — him just wanting to see a football game for the first time and enjoy life. And just thinking about it, it just makes me so sad.”

The child was hit around 2 p.m. Saturday while he and his family were waiting to cross Cooper Drive near Scoville Drive, according to police.

The alleged driver of the car, Jacob Heil, 18, has been charged with driving under the influence. His lawyer entered a not guilty plea to that charge on Heil’s behalf at a court hearing Wednesday.

Stoops was among many UK coaches and administrators who offered condolences to Shemwell’s family throughout the week.

“Chantel and I, along with the Kentucky football family, are in grief for the Shemwells, their family and friends,” he tweeted Tuesday morning. “It is hard to put into words the hurt we feel in our hearts, and our prayers and deepest condolences are with the Shemwell family and all affected by this tragedy.”

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Provided by Shannon Andreas
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