ORLANDO, Fla. — Bros before the Bahamas.
Former Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow ditched his vacation to visit former high school teammate Rodney Sumter Jr., who was shot three times in the Orlando, Fla., nightclub attack.
The two were on the football team together at Nease High School in Ponte Vedra, Fla. Sumter went on to play wide receiver at Jacksonville University. Tebow went on to greatness by winning two national championships and a Heisman Trophy at the University of Florida.
He was drafted by the Broncos in the first round in 2010. He was inserted into the lineup in the 2011 season and helped the Broncos to the AFC West title and a playoff win over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The Broncos traded him in the offseason in 2012 after they signed Peyton Manning to a free agent quarterback.
During the visit Tuesday, Sumter took a photo with Tebow. Sumter posted the photo on Instagram, adding “My high school quarterback left the Bahamas to come and see me. Tebow has always been an awesome person.”
Lucky to be alive
Sumter, 27, was working as a bartender at Pulse the night of the shooting, according to WFTV. When the shooting began, he attempted to flee, but was shot once in each arm, and once in his back, half an inch from his spine.
He was saved by another club patron that night, Joshua McGill, a nursing student.
McGill and his friends were able to escape the nightclub after hearing gunshots, but when he noticed Sumter behind a car, covered in blood, he jumped in to help.
After using his shirt to make a tourniquet for Sumter’s wounded arms and holding him tightly to stop the bleeding on his back, McGill helped Sumter to safety. He then rode with him to the hospital to keep pressure on the wounds.
“‘I promise you, God’s got this. You’ll be OK,'” McGill said to Sumter.