LaSalle-bred NFL player Luke Willson retires for health reasons – .

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LaSalle-bred NFL player Luke Willson retires for health reasons – .


In his announcement, the 31-year-old Seattle Seahawks tight end thanked his “homeland” of LaSalle and Windsor-Essex. “I hope I made you proud.

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Local sports hero Luke Willson – who made a career in football from LaSalle all the way to the NFL – has announced his sudden retirement from the game.

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In a shocking social media revelation, the 31-year-old tight end revealed he was diagnosed with “severe pericardial effusion” during the offseason.

The condition is defined by the accumulation of excess fluid in the space around the heart. Trauma is a potential cause.

Pericardial effusion at its worst can lead to medical shock: very low blood pressure, weakness, rapid shallow breathing, and chest pain, among other symptoms.

Willson said he spent “many days in the hospital”.

“This situation challenged me as an individual and changed my perspective on a lot of things about my life,” Willson wrote.

Willson said he made his decision on Tuesday – the start of what was to be his eighth NFL season, playing for the team that first drafted him: the Seattle Seahawks.

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Luke Willson of LaSalle shares advice with the University of Windsor Lancers football team during a visit in April 2019. Photo de Nick Brancaccio /Windsor Star

“After thinking about everything yesterday and being in the building, I decided it was time for me to start the next chapter in my life,” Willson wrote.

Willson began playing football with St. Thomas of Villanova Catholic High School in LaSalle, as well as with the Essex Ravens.

His talent on the pitch took him to Rice University in Houston, Texas, where he played NCAA football from 2009-2012.

In 2013, the Seahawks picked Willson as their fifth round pick. Willson will spend most of his career with the Seahawks, although he has also spent some seasons with the Detroit Lions, Oakland Raiders and Baltimore Ravens.

In his social media post, Willson expressed his gratitude to the Seahawks, the city of Seattle, and fans of the Seahawks (known in Seattle as 12).

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Seattle Seahawks No.82 Luke Willson rushes the ball during a game in Seattle in December 2016. Photo by Otto Greule Jr. /Getty Images

Willson also took the time to credit “my homeland” – the Windsor-Essex area, and more specifically his hometown of LaSalle.

“Thanks,” Willson wrote. “The opportunities that were offered to me throughout my childhood gave me the chance to dream and one day to make that dream come true. “

“Thank you to the coaches, teachers and everyone who made this trip. I have always done my best to be a true representation of the characteristics that make up our region. I hope I made you proud.

When it comes to his future, Willson is frank that he has “no idea what’s next at this time.”

“Football is really all I know. That’s all I’ve done in the past two decades, ”reflected Willson.

Willson ends his NFL career with 111 catches for 1,307 yards and 11 touchdowns in 102 career games.

-with files from Reuters.

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