The heartbroken parents of a talented young football star fighting for his life in intensive care have flown from Britain to Perth to stand by his side.
Danny Hodgson, 25, was punched while on his way home from a season-end game in Perth on Saturday night.
A 15-year-old boy has been charged with grievous bodily harm over the alleged attack on the British expatriate, who remains in an artificial coma.
Nicola and Peter Hodgson landed in Perth at 3 p.m. Friday and headed straight to the hotel quarantine, but are hoping to get compassionate permission to see their son at the Royal Perth Hospital before the two-week period is up.
Nicola and Peter Hodgson landed in Perth Friday afternoon at 3pm and headed straight to the hotel quarantine but are hoping to get permission to see their son
Danny Hodgson (pictured left with partner Jessica right), 25, was attacked Saturday night while on his way home from a season-end match in Perth
The ECU Joondalup Football Club star player has been in a coma since last Sunday after reportedly being punched in the back of the head after going home from a team function.
He suffered a brain haemorrhage and head fractures as a result of the alleged assault, as his parents rush to be with the 25-year-old.
“It’s unbelievable that we were able to achieve the impossible in 24 hours,” Hodgson’s mother, Nicola, wrote on Facebook after securing a flight to Australia.
“I can’t thank everyone involved enough. Our prayers have been answered and we have confirmed flights to Australia.
“Danny has a long journey ahead of us, but the fact that me and Peter will be by his side is a great comfort to us. It’s the most emotional experience I’ve ever had.
“One act of violence has led to thousands of good deeds and we will be eternally grateful for that.”
His parents arrived at Perth Airport Friday afternoon before boarding the quarantine transport bus from their hotel.
In the meantime, Mr Hodgson’s friend Jessica, uncle and aunt are the only visitors allowed to come to his bedside.
He has a long and challenging healing process ahead of him and can remain in an artificial coma for weeks or even months.
Danny Hodgson (pictured with his partner Jessica) was knocked to the ground in an unprovoked attack. A teenager has now been charged
Nearly $90,000 has already been raised for his recovery, including donations from Manchester United goalkeeper and personal friend, Dean Henderson, and retired English legend Alan Shearer.
“The money will be used to pay his mortgage and other bills and to keep his girlfriend from worrying about her job during this time, Danny will need all the support he can,” friend Steve Burton wrote in a message. GoFundMe page.
The family’s original Facebook post was flooded with more than 6,000 shares and hundreds of comments within five hours.
Several have tagged Western Australian Prime Minister Mark McGowan in the post to warn him of the family’s desperate plight.
“Please help this family. An innocent victim and family hurt by someone here in WA. They must not suffer from our border restrictions to get to their son,” one woman wrote.
Mr. McGowan has responded, saying expediting the arrival of Danny’s parents must be approved by the federal government.
“This case is deeply disturbing for the community and especially for the family involved,” he told The West Australian.
“International arrivals are a Commonwealth matter, so in this case I would strongly support the federal government to be very understanding.”
The promising soccer star (pictured) fights for his life in an artificial coma
Danny Hodgson (pictured right) was on his way home after a night out with his teammates
Hodgson was on his way home from a late-season game on Saturday night when he was knocked to the ground from behind in an unprovoked attack on a train station in Perth.
He was taken to the Royal Perth Hospital with serious head injuries and underwent emergency surgery for a brain hemorrhage and skull fracture.
The personal trainer, originally from Cumbria in north-west England, has since suffered severe brain haemorrhages, requiring more surgery, and remains in an artificial coma.
Mr Hodgson is a talented striker who represented Great Britain at international level before moving to Australia at the age of 18 to further his football career.
“Danny is full of life and has a heart of gold, he is the most kind, gentle and positive person I know with a passion for life and football,” his mother wrote in the Facebook post.
Danny’s family (pictured) back in the UK desperately wants his hospital bed in Perth
He plays for ECU Joondalup in Western Australia’s National Premier League, where he won a premiership and the Golden Boot as the top scorer last season.
“We are extremely saddened to report that our senior player Danny Hodgson has been hospitalized with a brain hemorrhage and skull fracture after being attacked in the city on Saturday night,” the club wrote on Wednesday morning.
ECU coach Kenny Lowe, who was previously a coach in the A-League, told Perth radio station 6PR that Mr Hodgson is a ‘top guy’.
‘What happened – I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. I can’t imagine what it does to his family being so far away,” he said.
“The big focus for us is Danny, and getting his parents out of here. There’s bound to be someone who can help.’
Ellis Healing was out with his teammate on the night of the attack and spoke to him on the phone just before he was knocked to the ground.
“All his friends sent voice memos to his girlfriend and his parents and they played them back to him in intensive care,” he told ABC Radio Perth.
The British expat (pictured) moved to Australia seven years ago to advance his football career
“Apparently it has had some effect on him.
“His fingers moved as he listened to his friends’ voice notes, so that’s a bit of positive news we’ve been getting over the past few days.”
The 15-year-old boy charged in the attack was arrested on Tuesday and later charged with grievous bodily harm.
‘It will be claimed around 1.55 am, the victim’ [man in his 20s] was walking near Perth train station when he was approached by the suspect,” Western Australia Police said.
“Without warning, the suspect would have hit the victim on the head, causing the victim to fall backwards.”
“The suspect would have fled the scene without trying to help the victim.”
The 15-year-old is due to appear in Perth Children’s Court on September 22.