Peers working to retire jersey of late classmate meet resistance - WNEM TV 5

Peers working to retire jersey of late classmate meet resistance from school

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Chris Martin, a 16 year-old junior at Ogemaw High School died from his injuries after the vehicle he was traveling in was hit on Friday.

“They're trying their best to honor Chris in their way,” said David Martin, Chris’s father.

The driver of the vehicle, a 17-year old was also killed in the crash. Chris's family is still in shock and disbelief their loved one is no longer with them.

Chris's father David Martin now mourning the loss of his son said he's overwhelmed with what his classmates and friends are trying to do in light of his son's death: get his football jersey retired.

“I think it’d be a great honor for them to retire his number,” David Martin said.

Josh Wanger was Chris's best friend and said an online petition has been started in Chris's name in the hopes of honor his late friend and to get his jersey retired.

But Wanger said school officials have pushed back saying retiring a jersey under the circumstances is against school policy.

“I don’t see why they couldn’t do this for his family, for him,” Wanger said.

Chris's older sister Brianna Martin said she can't understand why school administrators won't carry out her family's wish – especially considering how much Chris meant to so many people.

“I remember his last game, me and him took a picture together before we left,” Brianna Martin said. “He will always be remembered.”

TV5 reached out to the West Branch Rose City School District to get their side and find out if or why retiring a jersey is against school policy. However our calls were not returned.

Chris's father said the district has been accommodative to his family's needs, but also feels the district should do the same for his classmates who just want to honor their late friend.

“I think it helps them, to keep that memory of Chris," David Martin said.

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