North Brunswick teen honored during Rutgers football game after undergoing brain surgery


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After experiencing headaches in early June, 14-year-old Anthony Walker went to Saint Barnabas Medical Center, an RWJBarnabas Health facility, where the medical team identified that fluid from an infection had traveled to his brain and required immediate emergency surgery to relieve the pressure.

After having a piece of his skull removed, the North Brunswick teen remained in the hospital for two weeks, and had to miss his eighth grade graduation.

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Once discharged, he received treatment throughout the summer.

Thanks to Dr. Uzma Hasan and the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Saint Barnabas Medical Center, Anthony’s diagnosis is looking positive.

A quarterback for his Pop Warner and AAU teams, Anthony had aspirations of playing high school football this season, but with a second surgery to insert a plate in his head scheduled for this month, the North Brunswick Township High School freshman must sit out this season and focus on his recovery.

Rutgers Athletics and RWJBarnabas Health celebrated Anthony as the Shining Knight of the Game during the first quarter of the Rutgers University’s football team’s season opening 61-14 victory against Temple University on Sept. 4 at SHI Stadium.

The Shining Knight is an initiative designed to lift the spirits and shine the spotlight on a pediatric patient, teenager or young adult enduring healthcare challenges.

For his Shining Knight of the Game celebration, Anthony, his parents, step-mom and dad, and his closest friends, were met in the south end zone by the Scarlet Knight mascot for a special Knighting ceremony.

Alongside the Scarlet Knight, Anthony was saluted, promptly raising a sword in triumph to an ovation from Scarlet Nation.

Each Shining Knight of the Game will be enshrined in a Rutgers Athletics facility, recognizing their courage, while highlighting their unique game-day experience.

  • This information was provided by Mastro Communications, on behalf of Rutgers University and RWJBarnabas Health.

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