Lincoln HS Coach no longer facing suspension for helping teen

By Mara MacDonald - Reporter

EASTPOINTE, Mich. - Surveillance video from a nearby store showing a teen and an adult conversing before the teen went into the adult's truck went viral because many thought it may have been a kidnapping caught on tape.

At first, police were concerned it was an abduction, but it wasn't.

Turns out, it was the teen's caring coach looking out for one of his players who was going through a hard time.

Behind the wheel of the pickup truck was the varsity football coach from Lincoln High School in Warren.

Oliver Durham, 14, had been wandering the streets for 24 hours. He just couldn't deal with everything he was going through at the time.

His mom has stage 3 ovarian cancer and several other serious health problems. She can't work, and the family has lost everything. A charity has been paying for them to live in a motel in Warren. 

Oliver took off, and the only person he'd respond to was his coach, who came to pick him up.

"I hope my coach doesn't get into trouble for something I did," he told us with his voice cracking. The school district was considering suspending the coach for intervening.

After our original story aired, the decision was made not to suspend the coach.

"I'm overwhelmed with words and feelings," mom Heather Durham said.

Durham is grateful the coach won't get in trouble. She's also amazed at people she doesn't know coming forward to help her and her boys. After our original story we reached out to Warren officials.

Councilwoman Kelly Colegio picked up the ball and ran with it, activating every community resource she could think of.

Durham and her two sons are going to be moved out of the motel and into a rental home by this weekend.

"Kelly calls me ever day," Durham told us. The family has a long way to go and Heather's medical  prognosis isn't great. "There's always hope, you keep pushing forward," she said.

When we originally did this story, Durham never mentioned they'd set up a GoFundMe account. She was more concerned with making sure her son's football coach didn't suffer for his kindness.

If you are interested in helping the Durham family, you can view the family's GoFundMe account here.

Copyright 2017 by WDIV ClickOnDetroit - All rights reserved.