Legendary Formula 1 driver, Michael Schumacher, turns 45 today, 3rd January 2014, but remains in a coma at a French hospital as a result of a skiing accident he had on Sunday.
The Ferrari team which he spent many years racing for announced it would hold a “silent gathering” in front of the hospital to mark his birthday.
Jean Todt, former head of the team, visited his bedside on Thursday along with his wife Corinna, their children Gina-Maria, 16, and 14-year-old Mick, his father and brother.
Schumacher has had two operations to remove bleeding and swelling on his brain and is in an induced medical coma.
A statement from his family on his website said: “Following Michael’s skiing accident, we would like to thank the people from all around the world who have expressed their sympathy and sent their best wishes for his recovery. They are giving us great support.
“We all know he is a fighter and will not give up. Thank you.”
Brazilian racer Felipe Massa, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and Arsenal footballers are among the many public figures who have sent messages of support.