A YOUNG boy has died after collapsing during a sports practice session and reportedly waiting more than 30 minutes for rescue workers to arrive.
Elijah Jordan Brown-Garica, 12, died February 10 in New Jersey during a soccer practice session with coaches and teammates.
The session, held at the West Side Park football ground, was reportedly of a “light” intensity as Garcia trained with his 10-year-old brother Mekhi and the rest of the Essex County Predators.
At some point during practice, the team’s head coach reportedly left, and other coaches and parents guided the rest, according to the Daily Mail.
Soon after, Elijah unexpectedly collapsed to the ground.
“He wasn’t hit, like no contact or anything,” Mekhi told New York’s NBC News 4.
“He ran about 20 meters and said he was going to take a little break. I don’t think he took his time.”
Not knowing how to perform CPR to revive Elijah, the remaining coaches and parents frantically called 911.
However, calls can go to any dispatcher in the county, and although there is a police station just a few hundred yards from the field, the ambulance reportedly took at least 30 minutes to arrive.
Parents, coaches and players were powerless to help Elijah when paramedics arrived after it was too late.
After Elijah’s death, his family lobbied for CPR training requirements for all youth athletic trainers, as it is not currently required by New Jersey state law.
According to the American Heart Association, CPR by certified individuals can double and sometimes even triple the chances of survival for patients in cardiac arrest.
Sable Shelton, Elijah’s aunt, claimed that coaches have a responsibility to be prepared for emergencies when in charge of young children.
“They have adults who are supposed to be responsible for our children and they don’t have the basics when it comes to CPR or recognizing what’s an emergency and what’s not,” she said.
“We always have this discussion about football when it comes to these big, well-known players.”
Shelton continued, “But why don’t we have essentials for the kids, the kids — and my nephew had to witness it.”
Reven Brown, Elijah’s mother, claimed that she had time to dress herself and her other three children and go to the field before the ambulance arrived.
“I have three other children and I had to get them dressed and ready and I got there and the ambulance still wasn’t there and I called when I got there. They were literally on their way,” she explained.
“The trainer wasn’t there and told me none of us are CPR certified, but I will do my best to make sure we all become CPR certified.”
“He had so much to do, he had so much more time, he should have been here,” Brown added.
Elijah’s cause of death has yet to be confirmed and the family is reportedly awaiting the results of the autopsy.
They also set up a GoFundMe to pay for the 12-year-old’s funeral.
The caption on the page described him as an “outgoing, loving kid.”
With a financial goal of $10,000, $28,715 has been raised at the time of writing.
For more news content, The US Sun has the story of how an 11-year-old “child prodigy” recently died of a deadly flesh-eating infection after twisting his ankle.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/7428254/boy-dies-football-practice-waiting-ambulance/ Boy, 12, dies at football practice after waiting for an ambulance for more than 30 minutes when no one knew CPR