Former Captain of Belgian National Basketball Team Suffers Severe Leg Injury in Brussels Attacks
The athlete's wife confirms Belli also shattered his hip in Tuesday's attack
brightcove.createExperiences(); The former captain of the Belgian national basketball team was severely injured in Tuesday’s terrorist bombings in Brussels and will undergo surgery to save his leg, according to a Facebook posting from his wife.
S bastien Bellin, the 37-year-old Brazilian center for Gent Hawks of the Belgian league, was wounded in one of the two explosions that rocked Zaventem airport Tuesday morning. Overall, at least 34 people have been killed and 187 injured in the attacks, for which ISIS took credit.
Bellin was rushed by ambulance to a nearby hospital’s intensive care unit, PEOPLE learns.
Images of a stunned Bellin sprawled out on the airport’s tile floor – his leg, apparently maimed and bloodied – began circulating online soon after the attack.
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In an online posting Tuesday, Bellin s former team, BC Telenet Ostende of the Belgian league, claims the Oakland University graduate was operated on after being “propelled 20 meters” by the blast.
“He still has splinters/fragments in his leg and hip,” the team’s posting explains.
A Facebook post from the player’s wife, Sara Bellin, says surgery was performed on his leg “as it was split in two almost.” Luckily, the limb did not need amputation, she said.
“He’ll have to have another surgery as his hip is broken too,” Bellin’s wife’s Facebook post claims. “And there are bomb fragments in him still. He’s in a lot of pain but he said nothing compared to what happened to other people. He was a lucky one he said.”
The post concludes, “He’s in shock still as we all are but not close to what he is. It was bad. Really bad. Horrific. I can’t believe this happened. But he’s alive!”
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Bellin and his wife live in Michigan.
Bellin’s agent, Adam Prossin, refused to speak with PEOPLE about his client’s condition.
But in a statement issued via Facebook, Prossin confirms Bellin was injured in the bombings.
“Sebastien was seriously injured today by the bomb set off by the despicable murderous terrorists, in the airport in Brussels, Belgium,” Prossin wrote. “I hope the surgeries go well and you will be back to normal soon Sebastien.”