Fla. High School Football Player Dies At Practice

STARKE, Fla. (AP) — A 14-year-old high school football player died Wednesday in northeast Florida after collapsing during a practice at his team’s football camp.

The boy was a home-school student who played for his local team at Sebastian River High School on the central Florida coast, according to the Clay County Sheriff’s Office. Officials did not release his name.

The team was at Camp Blanding, a Florida National Guard training base in Starke, conducting its start-of-the-season camp when the boy fell ill. Weather reports had a high of 89 with 89 percent humidity.

In a 911 recording, a coach reported that a player needed medical assistance for a “heat injury” and that he had vomited.

The dispatcher asked if the boy was awake. The coach said he was.

“They’ve got water on him, trying to cool him down,” the coach said.

The ninth-grader was taken to Shands Regional Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

His family was notified, said Mary Justino, a sheriff’s office spokeswoman.

“Coaches are at the hospital and coaches are also at the camp/base with the teammates,” Justino said.

Bill Fritz, an official with the Indian River County School District, said members of the team were heading back to the high school and that grief counselors were being made available.

“The school district and Sebastian River High School communities are deeply saddened by this news,” Fritz said in a statement.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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