Just in:Footy legend Nathan Merritt reveals the truth about the severe illness that put him in a coma for a week and necessitated relearning to walk: ‘I’m fortunate to be alive’.

When South Sydney icon Nathan Merritt takes a lap around Accor Stadium this weekend to celebrate the NRL’s Indigenous Round, he will do so with the awareness that he is incredibly fortunate to be alive.

Merritt was rushed to the hospital and put on life support after being found unresponsive at his aunt’s house on October 6, just a week after participating in the Koori Knockout rugby league carnival.

This frightening incident led to him being placed in a coma at Sydney’s Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, initially thought to be caused by an adverse reaction to prescribed painkillers.

Now the Bunnies legend has shown just how far he has come since then and revealed how close he came to dying from a debilitating bout of double pneumonia.

Nathan Merritt is a club legend at the South Sydney Rabbitohs, playing 237 NRL games and scoring 154 tries – and he’s back with the club after almost dying last year

Merritt (pictured while receiving treatment) collapsed at his aunty’s house and was placed in a coma in hospital, where doctors discovered he had a bad case of double pneumonia.

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