EXCLUSIVE: Father Says His Daughter Suffered A Concussion While Playing School Volleyball Against Trans-Identified Male Student

A concerned father in California has come forward to reveal that his daughter sustained a traumatic concussion after playing high school volleyball against an opposing team with a trans-identified male student. Luis, whose name is being anonymized at his request due to fears about repercussions against his family, alleges his daughter had a ball spiked into her head so hard that she experienced blurry vision.

The incident occurred in October during a match at Half Moon Bay High School. Luis was in attendance to support his 17-year-old daughter, who was playing on behalf of a visiting high school Reduxx has chosen to withhold the name of in order to protect her identity. Luis explains that volleyball had been one of his daughter’s passions from an early age.

“My daughter has been involved in volleyball since she was in 4th grade,” he says. “She has always been a kid with her eye on the prize. When she first started asking about playing volleyball she began practicing in the backyard. For hours at a time, she’d hit the ball on the sloped roof. Eventually she was able to be a Team Captain at her school.”

But while his daughter had racked up an impressive school athletic record and had played dozens of games, Luis explained he immediately felt something was off during the October match. He says he noticed something strange about one of the Half Moon Bay players, who he says seemed stronger than all of the girls on the team.

“From a distance It seemed like a boy dressed in a girl’s volleyball uniform,” Luis says, adding that he quickly texted his wife in confusion. “I asked if she knew that there may be a boy on the [Half Moon Bay] team. She said yes.”

Immediately, Luis says concern began to set in.

“I told my wife that this was not fair. I felt frustrated that, in an indirect way, I was now supporting someone’s gender confusion. To boot, they were now playing against my daughter and her teammates. I had heard about transgender in sports issues, bathroom gender identification politics, and trans groups reading to kids at school. Now it was directly hitting home.”

Luis says that during the game, while he was chatting with another parent, the game suddenly stopped, and he turned to see his daughter being led out of the gymnasium while holding her head.

“[The other parent] turned to me and said, ‘Did you see that? She was hit by that boy?’ I had missed the actual hit, but felt the weight of everyone staring at me, including the opposing team,” Luis explains that he rushed to check on his daughter, terrified that she might be bleeding.

During a medical assessment by Half Moon Bay officials, Luis says his daughter reported blurry vision and head pain. Despite her injury, Luis’ daughter wanted to remain at the school to support her teammates, but sat out for the remainder of the match.

“After the game, a few parents voiced their displeasure with the incident. With all of the cancel culture crap, I was walking on eggshells, not wanting to add more fuel to this fire,” Luis says, noting that he tried to remain calm for his daughter’s sake.

“I totally felt alone. Like this was a bad dream. My daughter knew how angry I was. The drive was telling as my daughter asked me not to make it a big deal. But to me, it was already a big deal,” he says.

“We ended up taking my daughter to the doctor. They confirmed the concussion and my kid ended up not being able to play for the remainder of her senior year. She was playing for fun, and this was her final year doing it. She felt robbed. I felt deflated and powerless,” Luis explains.

Despite scheduling a meeting with school district administrators, Luis was told nothing could be done to prevent males from continuing to play on female teams. Internally, Luis struggled with the news, and began to weigh the risks of coming forward.

“If I say something out loud, will my kid be ostracized at school? If I don’t say anything, will I be silently accepting boys playing against girls at schools? Are there parents that would shame me and my family for saying anything? Don’t get me wrong, I have empathy for the boy. I don’t know what it feels like for someone to be born male and not identify with that. Life must be difficult,” Luis says.

“But at what point does someone’s gender dysphoria cross the empathy boundary? In my case when my daughter was injured.”

Reduxx has learned that the male student playing on the Half Moon Bay girls’ team was Aaron Lester, the son of California musician John Lester and social justice activist Lisa Phelan.

Lester’s parents claim he began to express an interest in wearing feminine clothes at age 9, when they say he wanted to wear a dress during an elementary school talent show.

“(His) mom and I had a talk with him. We said, ‘We’re totally fine with that, but there might be some people who don’t understand. You might get a hard time from some people and you should be prepared for that,’” Lester’s father is quoted as saying in a 2017 article published in the Half Moon Bay Review.

Lester’s father then wrote a song and incorporated references to his son.

“Pink for girls and blue for boys, fairy dust or fighting toys, a child must choose when they’re still young between a magic wand or plastic gun, but there’s this kid who doesn’t care,” the song’s lyrics state. “He’s strong, he’s wise and he’s pretty too.”

Lester and his mother at Ru Paul’s Dragcon. Source: Lisa Phelan / INSTAGRAM

While it is unclear when Lester began to identify as “female,” it appears to be relatively recently. In 2020, he was still referring to himself and his sibling as “brothers,” but in 2021, his mother began posting more frequently about “supporting trans kids” on her social media.

During the October match which resulted in Luis’ daughter being injured, Lester issued almost 1/3 of the total “kills” for the team, and helped Half Moon Bay dominate to an overwhelming victory.

In videos from the match reviewed by Reduxx, Lester is seen jumping higher than the female players, and hitting the ball with far more force.

Due to a lack of action from the school district, Luis says he has joined a group of concerned parents looking to push change on a local level.

“My daughter is okay now. She has no further treatments,” Luis says. “I feel like my daughter would not have injured had Half Moon Bay not allowed a male to play with the girls.”

Speaking to Reduxx, a representative from the Independent Council on Women’s Sports (ICONS) attributed much of the blame to the policies of California Governor Newsom.

“Governor Newsom and California school leaders are to blame for allowing boys to cause brain injuries and take opportunities from girls in sports. The Governor dismisses situations like this girl’s career-ending injury as unimportant to him,” the representative said.

“[Newsom] believes the well-being of ‘so few’ boys is paramount when measured next to safety and fairness for girls. These boys are ‘Gavin’s Golden Boys.’ They are allowed to do whatever they want and girls are acceptable collateral damage.”

ICONS is a non-partisan campaign group dedicated to defending the rights of female athletes to single-sex sport and has vocally advocated against policies which allow males to self-identify into women’s athletic categories. Since its founding, the group has railed against incidents of injury or risk involving female athletes forced to accommodate males in their sport.

“It’s time to stand up, speak up, and sue. Putting girls at known increased risk and stealing their opportunities is unethical.”

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Reduxx is your stop for pro-woman, pro-child safeguarding news and opinion that goes outside the mainstream narratives.