US

Philadelphia high school football player, 16, dies after collapsing during practice

Tragedy struck a Pennsylvania high school football team when one of its players suddenly collapsed during practice and died on Tuesday night amid 103-degree heat.    

Defensive tackle Ivan Hicks, 16, was taking a water break during warmups with the West Catholic Preparatory High School varsity team in preparation for a voluntary 7-on-7 scrimmage against rival Coatesville Area High School when he collapsed at around 5.45pm, the Chester County Coroner’s Office said. 

Coaching and medics rushed over to the six-foot-four, 300-pound athlete and immediately began performing CPR. 

Paramedics arrived within minutes to transport Ivan to Brandywine Hospital, where he was pronounced dead roughly an hour later.

A cause of death has not yet been determined, but an autopsy is scheduled for Friday. 

Philadelphia high school football player Ivan Hicks with his sister Jelisa Smith. Ivan, 16, died suddenly after collapsing during warmups before a practice game on Tuesday. Smith described her brother as shy but bubbly with a nice smile  

‘We are committed to getting answers for Ivan’s family, friends, and community. His parents have been notified and our hearts go out to them,’ Chester County Coroner Dr. Christina VandePol said in a statement, adding that Ivan did not appear to have any external injuries.  

‘We will be looking closely at possible cardiac causes, given what is known about sudden death in young athletes, but it’s too early to draw any conclusions. Cause and manner of death are pending during our open investigation,’ she continued.  

Ivan’s family suspects heat could have had something to do with the teen’s untimely passing. 

The heat index was 103 degrees in Coatesville that evening, and his sister, Jelisa Smith, said she doesn’t think the team should have been playing at the time.   

Ivan with his father Ivan Hicks Sr. The teen played defensive tackle for West Catholic Preparatory High School and dreamed of playing Division I football for Georgia State University

Ivan with his father Ivan Hicks Sr. The teen played defensive tackle for West Catholic Preparatory High School and dreamed of playing Division I football for Georgia State University

‘There could have been stuff done differently, but a lot of the circumstances could have been controlled,’ she told Fox 29

She described her brother as shy, but with a bubbly personality and a nice smile. 

‘He was very compassionate. He cared about others a lot,’ she told the station. He was also a straight-A student, loved to play video games, the family said, and he dreamed of playing Division I football for Georgia State University in the future. 

‘They’re going to miss a kind, sweet, loving person,’ his grandmother Isabella Hines, who also lost her husband to Covid-19 in April, told the station.  

‘He was so sweet and kind. He would do anything for anybody,’ she said. 

Smith, who started a GoFundMe to help pay for a memorial service for Hicks, said she wanted the players to be more careful in the future.   

Ivan collapsed during a water break while warming up for a practice game at Coatesville Area High School (pictured) and was pronounced dead an hour later

Ivan collapsed during a water break while warming up for a practice game at Coatesville Area High School (pictured) and was pronounced dead an hour later 

Coatesville Area Schools Superintendent Tomas Hanna issued a statement on the tragedy

Coatesville Area Schools Superintendent Tomas Hanna issued a statement on the tragedy

‘I just hope that other people are more cautious, and if you have a dream just pursue it how he did,’ she said.

West Catholic Prep High School officials said they were offering grieving counseling services to students 

‘We recognize that this moment is a difficult one for our school community,’ the school said in a statement. ‘Please be assured that we, along with all of the administrators, teachers and staff, will do everything possible to provide assistance to our students.’ 

Coatesville Area schools superintendent Tomás Hanna said his district was also reaching out to his school’s football players to provide assistance. 

Ivan collapsed on the Coatesville Area High School grounds.  

‘Our hearts and prayers go out to this young man’s family, and to the entire West Catholic High School community,’ he said in a statement. 


Source link

Related Articles

Back to top button