San Diego

16-Year-Old Mount Carmel High Cheerleader Paralyzed After Crash

The teen suffered serious damage to his spinal cord

A Sabre Springs family is leaning on their faith after a tragic crash left their 16-year-old son paralyzed from the chest down.

Isaac Coulapides, a junior at Mount Carmel High School, crashed down an embankment on Sabre Springs Parkway as he was driving home from a school football game on Oct. 6.

The teen suffered serious damage to his spinal cord.

His community has rallied this past week to raise donations for him and his family.

"We're praying to God for strength and wisdom through this situation," said Brad Coulapides, Isaac’s father.

Isaac underwent surgery and was diagnosed with two crushed vertebrae and a fractured sternum. He has no function in his legs and torso, according to an online fundraising page.

"He asked the doctor 'Am I going to walk?' and the doctor said 'No'" explained the teen’s mother, Lisa Coulapides.

Coulapides and his family are part of Canyon Springs Church in Scripps Ranch and have received an outpouring of support from strangers in the community.

"We are leaning on to our faith," said his father. "And we believe that He is going to deliver."

Friday night, Isaac’s Mount Carmel High School family paid him a tribute. Every person in the stands cheering on the Sundevils knew his name.

"Isaac would want everyone to know that he adores his cheer team," said Lisa.

Ian Lopez, who helped organize the donation collection said despite the accident and needing to go through physical therapy, he believes Issac will not lose hope.

"It's not going to be a different Isaac," said Lopez. "It's going to be the same guy, his spirit will always remain the same and his enthusiasm."

His mother told NBC 7, the night of the accident Isaac had his seat belt on, was not driving and texting because he had left his phone at home.

Police ruled the cause of the crash was speeding and say drugs and alcohol weren't involved.

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