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After injury, fire, Navys Llanusa alright and ready for spring

Time:2017-01-29 09:20Shoes websites Click:

Navy football Jonah Llanusa Ivin Jasper

Jonah Llanusa was really looking forward to heading home for the holiday break. The Oklahoma native was eager to spend quality time with family and getting some comfort following a difficult first semester at the Naval Academy.

Considered one of the jewels of Navy's incoming recruiting class, Llanusa underwent wrist surgery and was sidelined for almost the entire football season. Having to watch practice every day wearing a cast and a sweatsuit was a bitter pill for the plebe, who was already dealing with the adjustment to the military and academic demands of the academy.

Sadly, Llanusa's mental health respite to his hometown brought more heartbreak. On December 30, a massive fire destroyed the family's home in Choctaw, Oklahoma, leaving the five members of the Llanusa family with literally the clothes on their backs.

There is one major bright spot to this sad story as no one was injured in the fire. The entire Llanusa family was attending a basketball tournament in Tulsa while the flames swept through their house.

Ana and Aliyah Llanusa are members of the Choctaw High girls' basketball team and were playing in the finals of the Tournament of Champions that night. Jonah Llanusa will never forget the moment he heard the terrible news.

Streaking Navy downs Holy Cross

Streaking Navy downs Holy Cross

Bill Wagner

Mids have won seven straight in league

Mids have won seven straight in league (Bill Wagner)

"When the game ended, we all went down to the conference room and my dad got a call from the fire chief saying that our house had burned all the way down and was a total loss," Jonah recalled. "My dad brought us all together and told us what happened. My sisters both broke down crying and my mom was trying to get them together. When I saw that happening, I just had to walk outside and be by myself for a few minutes."

After making the hour and a half drive back home, the Llanusa family arrived to find their home still smoldering. Firefighters were breaking into Jonah's room in order to douse some remaining hot spots.

Navy women earn close road win, sweeps Holy Cross

Navy women earn close road win, sweeps Holy Cross

For the second time in as many meetings this season, a defensive stand in the game's waning seconds gave the Navy women's basketball team a narrow victory over Holy Cross on Saturday. The Mids (15-5, 8-1 Patriot League) edged the Crusaders (5-15, 3-6), 73-71, at the Hart Center in Worcester, Mass.

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For the second time in as many meetings this season, a defensive stand in the game's waning seconds gave the Navy women's basketball team a narrow victory over Holy Cross on Saturday. The Mids (15-5, 8-1 Patriot League) edged the Crusaders (5-15, 3-6), 73-71, at the Hart Center in Worcester, Mass.

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"When I saw the scene, I just broke down crying because of all the memories I have in that house. I just couldn't believe that everything we owned was gone," Jonah said.

Naturally, Llanusa's thoughts turned immediately to how fortunate it was that no one was home at the time. Had the fire begun five hours later, while the entire family was sleeping, the outcome could have been much worse.

"That was the first thing we all said while driving back home. Thank God no one was there because it was such a bad fired and burned so fast," Jonah said. "God was definitely looking down on us for everyone to be safe. All we lost was possessions and those can be replaced."

Choctaw is a suburb of Oklahoma City and the Llanusa family had lived there for almost four years. Fire investigators determined the blaze started in the attic, which is located directly above the sun room. An explosion in the sun room, a mostly glass structure, is what caused the fire to rage throughout the rest of the home.

"We all had to separate for a couple days. My dad and mom went to my uncle's house while my sisters stayed with some teammates and I stayed with my girlfriend," Jonah said.

For the past month, the family has been staying at a Candlewood Suites extended stay hotel in the area. Naval Academy officials granted Jonah Llanusa three extra days of leave, but he reported in time for the start of the spring semester on Jan. 7.

"Jonah was reluctant to leave us, but we felt it was best that he get back to the academy," Tony Llanusa said. "To be honest, it's a huge blessing that Jonah is at the academy with all the support he gets there."

Part of that support system is offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Ivin Jasper, who immediately reached out to Llanusa upon hearing about the fire.

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