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Former Buford athlete suffers setbacks in recovery

Devin Durden played football for three seasons at Air Force.

Devin Durden played football for three seasons at Air Force.

It seemed former Buford football standout Devin Durden was making slow progress this past weekend in his recovery from a motorcycle accident last week that left him paralyzed.

However, the 21-year-old Air Force Academy senior has suffered setbacks during the past two days according to multiple social media sites from family members and friends updating his condition.

According to the friendsofthedurdens.org website, established to offer updates on his conditions and seek donation to help with the Durden family's expenses, Durden had been taken off a ventilator Sunday following surgery to stabilize his spine late Thursday, and had spoken the words, "Christian" and "let's go home."

But he was put back on a ventilator Monday and was in critical condition with double pneumonia and a possible infection Tuesday according to various sources.

"Devin is in critical condition. He has pneumonia in both lungs and has air around his heart," an update on the freindsofthedurden.org site Tuesday afternoon read. "They are keeping him sedated to allow for his lungs to heal. Devin has to get medically stable before going to rehab will even be possible."

Another social media site -- a Facebook page entitled "Prayers for Devin Durden" -- posted an update about 4 p.m. that described his condition as "very critical."

Durden's father, Buford girls basketball coach Gene Durden, also confirmed the seriousness of Devin's condition.

"Not well right now," the elder Durden responded in a text message to an inquiry about his son's condition late Tuesday afternoon."

Devin Durden suffered numerous injuries in the accident, which occurred last Wednesday afternoon near the Mall of Georgia.

He underwent one surgery Wednesday night to repair a compound fracture in his femur, and then another surgery Thursday.

It was discovered during the latter surgery that his spine was severed and would be paralyzed from the waist down.

Support from the Buford community, as well as elsewhere, continues to pour in.

"The Prayers for Devin Durden" page on Facebook has received over 600 "likes" in less than five days, while donations through the friendsofthedurdens.org website have reached $1,430.