OAKLAND, Calif. - The family of an Oakland chef Daniel Luna, who was punched in the head and fell to the ground in a suspected beating at the NFC Championship game between the Rams and 49ers at SoFi Stadium last month, said he is now out of a medically induced coma and hopes to one day return to his restaurant, Mistura, when he is able.
But it's not going to be easy for the 40-year-old Luna, family friend and crisis communications expert Sam Singer told KTVU on Tuesday.
"He is significantly disabled," Singer said, not going into too much detail.
Luna, however, can now walk with assistance and is attending physical therapy.
Singer, who is a regular customer at Luna's restaurant on Piedmont Avenue, said Luna is expected to be released from the hospital this month.
"He hopes to return to his restaurant someday and return to his cooking and all his wonderful customers," Singer said.
Efforts to speak to his wife so far have been unsuccessful.
At first, it appeared as though Luna was the victim of a senseless attack.
However, the mayor of Inglewood indicated Luna was the first to shove another man from behind who then retaliated with a punch to Luna's head.
Inglewood police arrested Bryan Alexis Cifuentes for the alleged assault on Daniel Luna, a popular Oakland chef. Feb. 3, 2022
Police later arrested Bryan Alexis Rossel Cifuentes, 33, on suspicion of felony assault with great bodily injury.
The family has retained an attorney as they are "seeking justice."
There are still many questions surrounding this incident and so far, authorities have not released any surveillance of what occurred.
The Rams beat the 49ers 20-17 before a crowd of 70,000 to advance to the Super Bowl.
The attack on Luna brings to mind what happened to San Francisco Giants fan Bryan Stow 10 years ago.
Stow was brutally beaten outside of Dodgers Stadium in Los Angeles.
He was in a coma for months and suffered permanent brain damage.
Over the past decade, Stow relearned how to walk, talk, and function on his own.
Stow's attackers were sentenced to prison and he won a civil lawsuit against the Dodgers.
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