FRANCE – ABC News
Messages of support have flooded in for Formula One champion Michael Schumacher, who remains in a critical condition after a skiing accident in the French Alps.
Doctors say the 44-year-old German is fighting for his life after a post-operation scan showed widespread lesions on both sides of his brain.
He remains in an induced coma at a hospital in Grenoble.
“We cannot tell you what the outcome can be yet. We are working hour by hour but it is too early to say what is going to happen,” said doctor Jean-Francois Payen.
Medical experts say if Schumacher had not been wearing a helmet when he fell, he would not have survived.
Fans, friends, family members and even Schumacher’s rivals have sent their well-wishes, many via social media.
Schumacher’s wife Corinna, who along with the couple’s two children, remains at his bedside, expressed her gratitude in a statement
“We would like to thank the medical team who, we know, do everything possible to help Michael,” she said.
German chancellor Angela Merkel joined sporting legends and millions of people in expressing shock at the F1 great’s skiing accident.
Ms Merkel declared herself “extremely shocked along with millions of Germans” by the news.
In Schumacher’s home town of Kerpen, North Rhine-Westphalia, locals were also wishing for a quick recovery for the racing driver who first honed his skills on his father’s local go-kart track as a youth.
“He was always searching for risk and speed,” said town mayor Marlies Sieburg.
“Of course he is a fighter, maybe that will help him”.
Other well-known German sporting stars took to social media to wish the racing legend, known as “Schumi”, a quick recovery.
Tennis legend Boris Becker wrote on Twitter: “Let us all pray for (Schumacher) for a full and speedy recovery!!!”
The 22-time Grand Slam winner Steffi Graf wrote on Facebook:
“Our worries and thoughts are with Michael ‘Schumi’ and those who are close to him. We wish him a speedy recovery and know that his strength will help him through this difficult situation.”