Former Hibs youngster recovering in US hospital after life-saving surgery as friends start fundraiser for medical costs

Friends of former Hibs youth player Ollie Russell are looking to raise funds for the ex-Easter Road kid who has undergone life-saving surgery in the US after being hit by a car.

Russell, who shared a dressing room with former first-teamers Callum Booth and David Wotherspoon and was part of the team that won the Youth Cup final in 2009 as well as the league title and East of Scotland Shield, currently works as a football coach in Davis, California, and was rushed to hospital after the collision in Sacramento in late June.

The 32-year-old sustained serious injuries in the incident including a life-threatening brain bleed, several broken ribs, and a fractured wrist and thumb. The brain bleed required an operation on his skull, leaving the former Hibee with 48 staples.

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Friend Kevin McClory, who has started a fundraising page with the aim of reaching the target of $40,000, wrote: “It will be a long recovery, but he has the support of his parents, friends and Davis/NorCal soccer community to help him through this difficult time.

“We are looking to raise funds for the extensive costs of additional unforeseen medical expenses and rehabilitation costs. Any donation will be gratefully appreciated.”

Russell was released by Hibs at 19, spending time with Berwick Rangers and then Musselburgh Athletic, with whom he reached the Scottish Junior Cup final on two occasions, and studied towards an honours degree in Sports Coaching Sport Science.

He obtained his B Licence from the Scottish FA and remains in touch with former Hibs team-mates Sean Lynch, Scott Taggart, Kenny Waugh Jr, and Sean Welsh.

Ollie Russell celebrates winning the Scottish Youth Cup in 2009 with Sean Welsh, left, and Ally Park

Donations can be made on the gofundme page here>>>.