Community praying for man who remains in coma after attack

SILVER CREEK, N.Y. (WIVB) – Hours after the man who allegedly pushed him down the stairs was released on bail, friends and family gathered in Silver Creek to pray for Bill Sager.

Earlier on Friday, his allegedly attacker, Jeffrey Basil, had his bail reduced from $250,000 to $35,000, which was enough to allow Basil to post bail and remain free until his next court date.

Bill was injured over Mother’s Day weekend. Now with Father’s Day approaching, more than a month later, he remains in a coma. But the community continues to pray for his recovery.

More than 100 friends and family members gathered at the football field, where Bill used to play for the Silver Creek Black Knights.

“Bill is a man that you would always want on your team, because with anything he does, he always gives it everything he has,” said friend Chris Postle.

“We need to be uplifting. We need to be positive. That’s what Billy is. People at the hospital showing up every day, he hears those things. He has to,” said another speaker.

None of those who gathered were happy to hear that Basil had been released from jail.

“Bill knows who’s guilty. We have our opinions. And it doesn’t matter what happens with the court system or anything, we’re showing him right now what kind of support he has behind him,” said Brandyn Griewisch, who organized the vigil.

The group released 28 balloons, one for each of Bill’s 28 years. His family is praying for many more years.

His father, Bill Sager, Sr. said, “Thanks for all the prayers. Thanks to ECMC, all the doctors. All of Silver Creek: thanks a lot. It’s helping us get through this. Thanks again.”

To help defray the family’s medical costs, friends have set up the Bill Sager, Jr. fund, which you can donate to at any M&T Bank. They are also selling wristbands and T-shirts, which can be purchased here.

Friends plan on holding fundraisers in August and September. For details, follow “Pray for Bill” on Facebook. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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