High school freshman collapses at football practice and dies

(Source: Pixabay)

NEW YORK (AP) — A 14-year-old boy collapsed during a football practice held on a hot, humid Tuesday morning at a private high school and later died, police and school officials said.

Dominick Bess was headed into his freshman year at Mount Saint Michaels Academy, a Catholic, all-boys prep school in the northern part of the Bronx. Emergency crews got a call around 9:30 a.m. saying he had apparently gone into cardiac arrest, fire officials said.

Dominick was treated on campus and then taken to a hospital, where he died, officials said. The cause of his death is unknown, the school said.

A heat advisory was issued for the city but didn’t go into effect until noon. Temperatures reached into the high 80s, but with humidity it felt much hotter.

Mayor Bill de Blasio, a Democrat, later tweeted: “Our hearts break for this young man’s family. We should prohibit sports practices during heat waves.”

Dominick was a brainy, fun-loving boy from a close-knit family, and he’d help out his relatives even with the cooking, cousin Simone Dyer said.

“A well-rounded kid,” he was good at things ranging from math to baking cinnamon buns, she said.

“He was a good kid — awesome kid,” Dyer said.

Mount Saint Michaels said in a statement that its “heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends, as well as coaches, the team and our student-athletes.”

Mount Saint Michaels has 800 students and a grass football field with stands that seat up to 3,000 people, according to its website. The natural field helps tamp down high heat levels, according to the website, which can reduce the likelihood of heat stroke and fatigue.

The football season begins in September, but practice had been going on for weeks.

At least four other high-school-age boys around the country have died during practices in the past two months.

On Aug. 10, 16-year-old Joshua Mileto died performing a drill used by the U.S. Navy SEALs for conditioning. He was carrying a log with his teammates when it struck him in the head at Sachem East High School on Long Island.

On Aug. 2, a Mississippi high school player was found unresponsive at his home after practice and later died. A 16-year-old suffered heat stroke in Fort Myers, Florida, and later died on July 12, and an incoming freshman in Grand Ledge, Michigan, collapsed during a workout and died July 25.

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